No local family will go hungry this Christmas: Northern Devon Foodbank launches festive appeal

Northern Devon Foodbank volunteers have been hard at work throughout the coronavirus pandemic. Pictu

Northern Devon Foodbank volunteers have been hard at work throughout the coronavirus pandemic. Picture: Northern Devon Foodbank - Credit: Northern Devon Foodbank

Northern Devon Foodbank has pledged that no local family will go hungry this Christmas.

The charity, which has branches in Barnstaple, Bideford, Holsworthy, South Molton, Ilfracombe and the Lyn Valley, has urged local people to get behind its annual Northern Devon Christmas Fund JustGiving campaign.

The Gazette would normally promote its annual Give a Gift Appeal for the foodbank but this year, with the pandemic making the normal food donations drop-offs difficult we have instead decided to throw our full support behind the online appeal.

Footballer Marcus Rashford has helped to highlight the plight of so many families living on the breadline and for foodbanks around the country 2020 has been a year like no other.

The Covid-19 pandemic has hit families hard, with many parents finding themselves out of work through no fault of their own.

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But Northern Devon Foodbank has said it has also been a year in which people have come together to support and care for each other and the charity is incredibly grateful for the support that it has received.

Chairman Duncan Withall said: “The Northern Devon Christmas Fund is a special fund that helps struggling families to celebrate Christmas by giving them supermarket vouchers to do their Christmas shopping.

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“The Christmas Fund has been running for 30 years and has helped thousands of families, but the challenge has never been greater.

“Qualifying families are referred by frontline professionals, such as health visitors, social workers and GPs, and this year we’re aiming to support at least 300 families, so every penny counts.”

Between October 2019 and September 2020, Northern Devon Foodbank provided 5,028 emergency food parcels to adults living in North Devon and Torridge, up 30 per cent on the previous year.

Over the same period, emergency food parcels provided for children rose a staggering 45 per cent versus the year before, to 2,884.

The charity said this increase in demand has been matched by an increase in support from the community, with volunteers stepping in to keep the six foodbanks open.

Please show your support for this vital cause. You can donate online through the dedicated Northern Devon Christmas Fund JustGiving page at .

Alternatively, cheques made out to Northern Devon Foodbank can be sent to Northern Devon Foodbank, Supreme House, Pitt Lane, Bideford, EX39 3JA.

You can also find out more about the Foodbank and ways to help at .

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