The operators of a leading food bank network have revealed that demand for its emergency parcels increased sharply last year as the pandemic caused so much damage to the circumstances of households across the UK.
The Trussell Trust has revealed that it distributed around 2.5 million food parcels to people in need of them over the course of the year to the end of March 2021.
Those figures represent a 33 per cent increase compared to the year before, with almost a million food parcels being handed out to children during the most recent full year.
Worryingly, the food bank operator has noted that the number of parcels it gives out each year has been on a steep upward curve in recent years.
The charity’s own figures show a 128 per cent increase in the number of emergency food parcels its food banks give out annually over the course of the last five years.
The pandemic is known to have added hugely to the financial pressures and difficulties that households across the UK have been experiencing.
According to the Trussell Trust, the virus crisis has contributed to the huge increase in demand for its services but has also led to a major upturn in activity among community-based groups providing food and emergency supplies to people in need.
With elections upcoming in Scotland and elsewhere in the UK, the Trussell Trust has called on politicians of all parties to work towards ending the need for food banks.
“No one should face the indignity of needing emergency food. Yet our network of food banks has given out record numbers of food parcels as more and more people struggle without enough money for the essentials,” said Emma Revie, the chief executive of the Trussell Trust.
“This is not right but we know we can build a better future. This pandemic has shown the unexpected can hit suddenly, but we know when we push for change, united by our desire for justice and compassion, the government has to listen and act,” she added.
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