Offenders lend helping hand at Kirkcaldy foodbank

From left, ''Ian Campbell (vice chairman Kirkcaldy Food bank), Angela Campbell (volunteer) Archie Mellville, Carol Latimer (volunteer) and Cllr Judy Hamilton.
From left, ''Ian Campbell (vice chairman Kirkcaldy Food bank), Angela Campbell (volunteer) Archie Mellville, Carol Latimer (volunteer) and Cllr Judy Hamilton.
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Volunteers at Kirkcaldy Foodbank are now getting a very welcome helping hand from the Community Payback by Offenders Scheme.

Since December last year the foodbank has been giving individuals and families in crisis emergency food parcels to make sure they don’t go hungry.

Based in Dysart Kirk, donations are accepted, date-labelled and sorted into family, couple or single sized packs providing a balanced diet for three days.

All the work is carried out by volunteers, and until recently their work included the transportation of the food parcels to distribution points.

John Cullen, from Kirkcaldy Foodbank, said: “ As the need for food parcels has increased, so has the amount of lifting and driving that has to be done especially now that we have additional storage at St Bryce.

“Luckily the Community Payback by Offenders Scheme has stepped in to help and is now acting as logistics managers making sure that the food parcels get to the right place at the right time.

“Thanks also to MKM builder’s merchants and Havelock Europa who supplied the shelving for storage. We can now store food and get it to the people who need it as quickly as possible.”

The Community Payback by Offenders Scheme is managed by Fife Council’s criminal justice social work services.

Those on the scheme have been placed on a community payback order by the court, which can involve completing unpaid work of between 40 and 300 hours.

Councillor Judy Hamilton, chairman of Kirkcaldy Foodbank, said: “I am pleased that the community payback scheme is making such an important contribution to the Kirkcaldy Foodbank.

“By working together they are giving people in our local community who are in crisis the urgent help they need. This is one of the many ways in which the Community Payback scheme provides opportunities for offenders to make amends.

“By helping community organisations carry out projects that need some extra manpower, the community payback clients also see how their work is making a difference to local people.”

Archie Melville, ommunity payback lead officer said: “Community Payback clients gain valuable, positive work experience, confidence and new skills from working on community projects.

“We are glad that the Kirkcaldy Foodbank and local people can benefit from the unpaid work of the community payback by offenders scheme.’