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Food poverty isn’t a once a year issue – people rely on food banks for their meals year round.
But while those of us who are more fortunate, sit at home and overindulge during the festive season, those who are less so don’t have the certainty that they’ll even get a meal on Christmas.
It truly saddens me that in this day and age that this is some people’s reality.
I’m not ‘well-off’ by any stretch of the imagination, but I am fortunate enough to be able to feed my family and not have to worry about where our next meal will come from.
And if I’m honest, it’s not something I’ve given much thought to until recently.
But now that I have, I absolutely want to give something back – though I’m on a very strict budget myself, even a small food parcel will make a difference.
For the past 2 years, the UK Money Bloggers have been running a campaign at Christmas called FoodBankAdvent, so this year I’ve decided to do my bit and get involved.
So the concept is the reverse of a traditional advent calendar – rather than getting a treat for 24 days, you instead put an item into a box for 24 days.
Starting now, at the beginning of November, ready to donate to a food bank in December in plenty of time for it to be distributed over the festive season.
Obviously, you could just donate a box in one go rather than putting in an item a day.
But taking part in the FoodBankAdvent helps to keep the cause on people’s radar for the month and hopefully more and more people will start to get involved.
Head to The Trussell Trust’s website and find your nearest food bank.
On their site they will have a list of what they urgently need which will give you an idea what to put in your box.
Different food banks require different items, so be sure to take a look before you start to fill your box.
For example, this is the list from my local food bank:
URGENTLY NEEDED FOOD ITEMS
- UHT MILK
- TINNED FISH
- TINNED MEAT
- TINNED FRUIT / CUSTARD
- TINNED RICE PUDDING
- TINNED SPONGE PUDDINGS
- TINNED POTATOES
- TINNED CARROTS
- TINNED PEAS
- TINNED TOMATOES
- NOODLES/POT NOODLES
- TINNED SOUP
- PASTE / JAMS
- FRUIT JUICE / SQUASH
- CURRY / PASTA SAUCES
- CHOCOLATE /CHILDREN’S SWEETS
- DOG / CAT PET FOOD
WE’VE GOT PLENTY OF
- BEANS AND PASTA
Add in an item every day for 24 days and then arrange to drop it off at your local food bank at the start of December.
The website will tell you where your nearest drop off points are and their opening hours.
If you’d like, you can share your food parcel on social media using the hashtag # FoodBankAdvent
You can make a one off donation to The Trussell Trust or set up a regular payment.
If you’d like to give some of your time to the charity there are a range of volunteering opportunities available ranging from warehouse volunteers, voucher coordinators and even web editors.
Whatever you choose to do, thank you so much for deciding to get involved. Together, we can make a difference.
I started Katie Saves while on Maternity Leave to document our adjustment to living on less. Now back in work - I blog about all things money with a little life organisation thrown in for good measure. Join me!