Food bank helps dozens of Ottery families

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A new food bank in Ottery has already supplied more than 1,000 meals to families in crisis since it opened six months ago.

But organisers predict there will be increasing demand for its services with the continuing economic downturn.

The scheme has been running since the summer, and Chris I’Anson said: “In that time we have supplied 26 food parcels each to feed a family for three days, that’s 338 person days worth or 1,014 meals.

“Local people have been very generous with their support and supplies are coming in steadily.”

She said Ottery Primary School provided a large donation from their Harvest Festival event, as did several churches around the town.


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There was a Christmas offering from the district Brownies and Guide, and this term pupils from The King’s School are also getting involved, organising a ‘Pop-up Food Bank’.

Chris said Churches Together in Ottery (CTIO), who run the food bank, is very grateful for the extra help, adding: “With continuing inflation and unemployment, we anticipate more families finding themselves in financial difficulties and needing support.”

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CTIO joined forces with a similar scheme in Honiton after food banks in nearby towns had received approaches from people in Ottery wanting to use the service.

Chris, a teacher, said: “Working in a school you come across families struggling, I heard about one pupil who said they were told to eat plenty of lunch because there was no food at home for dinner.

“It is so sad, and we hope the project can help people like this.”

The food bank provide sufficient non-perishable foodstuffs to feed a person or family for three days, as well as counselling while more long-term support can be arranged.

The items they need are tins of meat, fish, soup, vegetables, tomatoes, potatoes, beans, spaghetti, fruit, rice or sponge puddings and custard.

Cartons of long-life milk and fruit juice, packets of rice, pasta, noodles, savoury rice, cereals, tea bags, coffee, sugar and biscuits, and jars of coffee and pasta sauce are also welcome.

For more details on the food bank or how to donate email osmfoodbank@gmail.com.

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