Click here for details and links to all known food banks in Devon. Use this to access provision yourself (referral usually needed), to see how to donate food/money, or to signpost others.
Coronavirus Update, 27/3/20:
How can we best help at the moment? Whilst money is always welcome, donations of food and other requested items are particularly wanted, where possible. This is for two reasons: 1) Many supermarkets are limiting how much food people can buy – including even volunteers buying for food banks. 2) As more of us are self-isolating and buying food online, donations in supermarket collection points are actually decreasing.
How do I donate? Please see details on the Devon List as to where donations are currently received for each food bank – address/opening times of food bank itself, local shops etc. (Church buildings are generally closed now, but Some food banks actually based at churches are still open for this purpose only)
What about people who are self-isolating? Food banks generally require income-related referrals from specialist agencies – for existing service-users who are now self-isolating, many food banks are now delivering. Please see our separate coronavirus community support page for information about mutual aid for other people who are self-isolating.
How can I help?
- Donate items to your local food bank
- Donate money to your local food bank
- Volunteering at a food-bank
- Set up a Family Fun Cooking scheme in your local area
- Organise a meal – food can be provided by Exeter Food Action
- Support Feast of Fun which combats holiday hunger across Plymouth
Many churches or Christians Together groups run or contribute to food banks locally, as well as running homeless services or community cafes.
Why are food banks important?
The leading network of food banks, the Trussell Trust, suggests that in 2020 “More than 14 million people in the UK live below the poverty line”. Food banks aim to provide nutritionally-balanced emergency food to people who have been referred in crisis (for instance by advice agencies, GPs, social services and schools). Most food banks provide short-term provision (eg 3-14 day parcels) to meet immediate needs but prevent dependence, whilst supporting or signposting people to resolve their particular challenges or crises in the longer term.
In 2018/19, over 24,000 food parcels were given to families in Devon, up again from the previous year – Read More. Demand is likely to increase significantly in 2020 due to coronavirus, the potential closures of schools (and thus lack of free school meals), and wider economic impacts.