Foodbank celebrates second anniversary

Pictured at the Newtownabbey Food Bank agm - Kevin McWilliams, St Gerards/ St Vincent de Paul,  Jonathan McCunn, Glenabbey Church, Michelle Purdy, Deaconess Ballyclare Presbyterian. Rev John Dickinson, Carnmoney Church, Rev Stuart Hawthorne, Abbots Cross Presbyterian Church
Pictured at the Newtownabbey Food Bank agm - Kevin McWilliams, St Gerards/ St Vincent de Paul, Jonathan McCunn, Glenabbey Church, Michelle Purdy, Deaconess Ballyclare Presbyterian. Rev John Dickinson, Carnmoney Church, Rev Stuart Hawthorne, Abbots Cross Presbyterian Church

Newtownabbey Foodbank celebrated its second anniversary at its latest annual general meeting on June 1.

A small food ministry at Carnmoney Church evolved into a Foodbank when it partnered with Trussell Trust and 25 other Churches in April 2015 to become one of the largest Foodbanks in Northern Ireland.

One Distribution Centre quickly grew into four to meet the needs of those struggling to make ends meet in our community.

Reverend Dickinson, who announced that the Management Committee had taken the decision to employ a part-time Foodbank Manager said: ”Since the Foodbank opened two years ago 6414 adults and children in the Newtownabbey area have received the support of a three-day supply of food. It is no longer possible for volunteers to sustain the workload hence the decision to employ a manager. We hope that this position will be in place by September this year which will increase our ability to help more people who are struggling to feed their family.”

The demand for the Foodbank is such that the stock of food is low and depends on the support of the community to maintain it.

A spokesperson said: “We would be grateful for your support at our food collection day in Tesco Northcott on July 1. Donations of food can be left into the Permanent Collection Point (PCP) at Tesco Northcott or any church involved in the project.

A wide variety of people visit the Foodbank, some working but earning a low income, who just cannot make their money stretch, those on benefits who hit a crisis with a large bill to pay or a child needing a pair of shoes and some who have just lost their job and waiting on benefits.to be resolved. Without the support of the Foodbank they would go hungry.”