People in Cupar are being asked to dig deep to help families in need this Christmas amid predictions that 2016 is set to be the busiest year yet for the town’s foodbank.
Rising food costs, housing benefit caps and delays in benefit payments are the key reasons why people on low incomes are already struggling to meet daily living costs, says Canon Pat McInally of Cupar foodbank.
And that means that buying even basic gifts for children can place impossible demands on budgets that are already stretched to the absolute limit.
“At Cupar Foodbank we want everyone to have a happy Christmas this year, but we need help to ensure we can provide for every family referred to us, “ said Canon Pat.
“Thanks to the generosity of the people of Cupar and the surrounding area, we have been able to provide Christmas hampers to families in need over the Christmas period, as well as providing emergency food parcels throughout the year.
“Our latest statistics show an increase in the numbers of people having to rely on the foodbank in times of crisis.
“We expect this Christmas to be our busiest yet.”
As well as donating non-perishable items such as tinned goods and UHT milk, volunteers at Cupar foodbank are hoping that people will help in other ways too, so that recipients can enjoy some fresh meat, fruit and vegetables this festive season.
“There are a number of ways people can help us to help others,” said Canon Pat.
“For example, we would like local businesses and organisations to donate £50 to sponsor a hamper.
“Your business will be published in our list of donors and the name of your business/ organisation will be included on the Christmas card we send out with the hamper.
“Further details are available on our website or by calling Fiona on 07474453153.
“We hope to provide every family with fresh meat, fresh vegetables and fresh fruit this Christmas.
“Making a financial donation will enable us to purchase fresh produce prior to delivering the Christmas hampers. Donations can be made by cheque – made payable to Cupar Foodbank, 21 St Catherine St, Cupar, KY154TA or by BACS payment at RBS, Sort Code 83 17 23, Account No: 00269012.”
Canon Pat said that the foodbank had also compiled a special Christmas shopping list that includes items such as shortbread, chocolates and mince pies.
He said it would be helpful if all donations were received by Monday, December 12, as this will give volunteers time to pack hampers prior to delivery.
Donations can be made at Cupar foodbank in St Catherine Street on Mondays between 11am and 2pm; Wednesdays between 4pm and 6pm and on Fridays from 11am to 3pm and from 5pm to 6pm.
They can also be made at all local churches, the SNP office in Crossgate and at Tesco, which will top up donations by 50 per cent.