Kirkcaldy Foodbank records busiest month ever since it started

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Kirkcaldy Foodbank has recorded its busiest month ever since it started in 2013 as more people and families are affected by rising fuel costs and benefit cuts.

The independent charity logged a drastic increase the number of visitors in November – a figure only been rivalled by April 2020 when the first coronavirus lockdown was introduced.

The growing numbers of people needing support can be directly linked to rising fuel costs and benefit cuts as well as reduced working hours and redundancy due to the ongoing pandemic.

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Joyce said that demand is increasing at the foodbank. Pic: Fife Photo Agency.Joyce said that demand is increasing at the foodbank. Pic: Fife Photo Agency.
Joyce said that demand is increasing at the foodbank. Pic: Fife Photo Agency.

Joyce Leggate, chairman of the foodbank, said: “November has been our busiest month ever due to a combination of rising fuel costs, reduction of Universal Credit, and the COVID-19 pandemic.

"We have continued to see an upward trend of demand since June with one third of food parcels going to households with children.

“Demand is on the rise and at an all time high, and is certainly not going to go away anytime soon.”

Joyce said that as the cost of food is also going up, the foodbank’s capital is quickly being used up to make sure the shelfs remain fully stocked.

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“Although we have been receiving amazing support through donations, every month we are eating into our capital,” she said. "It is not a problem yet, but who knows where we will be next year as it can all change very quickly.

"We’re looking at an increase of food prices this month which is rapidly rising and will continue to do so.”

Joyce adds that although the foodbank is seeing dramatically increased footfall, the people and businesses of Kirkcaldy are pulling out all of the stops to support it.

"We can’t stress how grateful we are to all who have supported us with donations – no matter how big or small – in an ideal world we would dearly love to not have a foodbank, but unfortunately we do.

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"We are closely reviewing the situation with the Omicron variant closely and will not be changing our opening times, however, we’re asking that anyone visiting the foodbank to wear a mask and to observe social-distancing rules to keep themselves and our volunteers safe.”

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