Local UUP councillors have backed the Newtownabbey Foodbank and the work it does across the region.
Cllr Robert Foster, Cllr Jim Montgomery, Cllr Vera McWilliam, Cllr Stephen McCarthy and Cllr Michael Maguire met with Moni Wilson of Newtownabbey Foodbank to discuss the support offered by the charitable organisation.
While the South Antrim UUP Office in Ballyclare is a registered referral point for the Foodbank, following the meeting, all UUP councillors in the borough can now do the same for their constituents.
Speaking on the meeting the representatives said: “The need for foodbanks in our society is a painful reminder that we as elected representatives have much to do to in creating a quality of life that delivers for all our citizens, however, we must pay tribute to the amazing work the Trussell Trust do across our borough.
“We are now all registered to refer our constituents to the foodbank, should their financial situation require it. We are also keen to work across the borough in raising awareness of the support available.
“Quite often we find that our residents most in need of support, admirably try their best to get by without asking for help. We are keen to let our residents in need know that while support exists and your circumstances are difficult, we are happy to discretely help you access the services of the foodbank.”
Commenting on the meeting, Moni Wilson added: “Sadly, the situation around the country is such that more and more people find it difficult to make ends meet. This is not only the case if a person is unemployed, on benefits or has low income.
“Increasingly we find that many people who are working long hours in order to put food onto the table for their families, find it difficult to manage. As we know, some sectors have not seen a realistic pay increase for many years.”
Moni concluded: “The Newtownabbey Foodbank has always been generous and supportive to their local community
and assisted individuals and families while they were going through difficult times. Thanks to the generosity of our donors, this approach has not changed. The Foodbank is still here to help and assist wherever people are in need.
“In order to ensure that fewer people are living in fear of how to supply the next meal to their families, we have approached the elected representatives in this area to assist anyone in need. We have supplied the councillors with vouchers which are needed in order to avail of food.
“If you are struggling to feed yourself or your family, please don’t hesitate to contact one of your councillors. We are all working together to make life easier for as many as we possibly can.”