Eleven island residents were fed by Eilean Siar Foodbank on Friday, May 9th – and the numbers using the service are on the rise.
Established by the Trussell Trust and New Wine Church, Eilean Siar Foodbank opened in September 2013 and, less than a year into operation, the service is a clear success – something which both pleases, and dismays, those involved.
“I’d have been happy if when we opened the doors in September no one came through, but that’s just not the case,” said Foodbank Manager Gavin Lawson.
“There are a number of reasons why people come to us for emergency food supplies. We help people who have delays with receiving benefits, people who have debt issues, those who are working but are hit with an unexpected bill, anyone who is struggling.”
Working with both individuals and agencies such as Action for Children and the Comhairle’s Social Work department amongst others, the Foodbank is making a very real difference to those it helps.
One woman, who is awaiting her wage payment at the end of the month, said: “It’s a bit humiliating coming here but I need this to keep me going until I get paid, it’s vital.
“If the Foodbank wasn’t here I’d have to quit my job so I could get benefits. I don’t want to do that though, if I don’t work I’ll have no purpose, no drive to my life.”
A full feature about the Eilean Siar Foodbank is in this week’s Stornoway Gazette, out today (Thursday, May 15th); and in our Gazette video, Foodbank Manager Gavin Lawson explains how the Foodbank works.