West Somerset Food Cupboard Newsletter, March 2022

Dear friends and supporters of the West Somerset Food Cupboard

Welcome to spring! Let’s all hope it brings better news than has recently dominated the headlines.

Despite so much sadness and anxiety, the generosity of donors to the Food Cupboard in West Somerset has been constant and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. Without you we simply couldn’t get on with the quiet provision of emergency food to those who need it most in our communities.

We were especially touched by a generous donation of food from students at Foxes who, while learning about random acts of kindness, decided to extra carefully budget their money so that they could buy food to donate.

We continue to happily work in partnership with many other local organisations; in particular this month these include the Alcombe WI, the West Somerset College, The Hope Centre and St. Andrew’s Club. We’ve also loved having two Duke of Edinburgh award scheme participants helping out during the school holidays. They were a huge help sorting out our food cupboards and packing food boxes ready for distribution and were a pleasure to have on the team.

As we mentioned in last month’s newsletter, we are very busy working on the Local Pantry initiative and liaising with Somerset West and Taunton council, Fareshare South West, the Charity Commission, SPARK and grant-making bodies to bring this to Alcombe very soon. We are still seeking a treasurer to support this work.

Any non-perishable food items are gratefully received. This month we are running low on:

  • Cartons of juice/small bottles of squash
  • Tins of cold meat
  • Savoury biscuits/snacks/crisps
  • Hot chocolate

91 food parcels have been distributed during February, mostly through our partner agencies who are busy helping recipients work through a wide range of challenges that mean that money is tight at the moment. This month distribution has been through the West Somerset Advice Bureau, West Somerset College, Parent and Family Support Advisors, Home-Start West Somerset, the Hope Centre, Magna, Village Agents, mental health services, Job Centre Plus, social care, Julian House, Church groups and private requests.

You’ll be aware from the headlines, or perhaps even from personal experience, that, whilst spring is coming, many are currently in a position of choosing between heating and eating. Thanks to the generosity of donors and the willing time commitment of volunteers, this doesn’t have to be the case here in West Somerset. So please help us make sure that members of your community know about the Food Cupboard and how to access support. You can direct them to our Facebook page, give them our leaflet or display our poster (attached with this email), or pass on the contact details below. Thank you for helping.

Happy pancake day!

From Ali and the Food Cupboard team

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