The Colchester Foodbank has predicted a worrying spike in demand over the festive period, after the busiest year yet amidst the cost-of-living crisis and the rising energy costs for households across the UK. For the first time in its history, demand is outweighing donations, so the foodbanks are preparing for the most difficult winter on record and appealing for much needed support from the Government, the public, and local communities. 

In response to this appeal, a group of professional services businesses with shared values and a mutual understanding of the importance of community, recently came together to support the good work of the Colchester Foodbank. Having previously worked together for several years, the businesses including The Mackman Group, Griffin Chapman, Park City Consulting, Stanley Bragg, Handlesbanken, James & Lindsay Ltd, Plan Money, Dudley Smith Partnership and Sandersons, have collectively donated roughly £4,000 to the centre. This donation will provide approximately 50 families with a food parcel costing approximately £80. 

The foodbank sits within The Trussell Trust’s network of over 1,300 centres nationwide. Each centre has seen a drastic increase in the number of people using their service, as over the last six months 320,000 people have been forced to turn to a foodbank in the network for first time. However, with families across the country feeling the impact of the current economic crisis in varying ways, donations, both food and financial, have taken a severe cut and have forced centres within the Trust to purchase provisions to supplement the goods they would have otherwise received. 

The Trussell Trust aims to combat poverty and hunger across the UK, by providing the local community with nutritionally balanced food parcels to support those most in need. New research published by the Trust this year predicts that an average of 7,000 emergency food parcels will be handed out per day in the next six months. Fearing that this winter will see the biggest ever need for foodbanks, donations to organisations like the Colchester Foodbank are vital.  

Other businesses and individuals who can donate are encouraged to do so, and there are various ways in which you can help. The Colchester Foodbank is open Monday to Saturday from 10am to 2pm and can accept online food deliveries during that time. Several supermarkets throughout the UK also supply food donation boxes, usually upon exiting the store, which accept dried and canned goods and other long-life food items. For those who are unable to provide a financial donation, raising public awareness of the crisis and the Trust on social media is free but very effective. 

Michael Beckett, CEO of the Colchester Foodbank said, “We would like to say a big thank you to the group of local businesses for their generous donation. During this cost-of-living crisis, more and more families are struggling, and we fear that demand will reach its peak this winter. The group have stepped up and their donation will make a real impact on our community and to the many families who currently rely on the food bank. The Colchester Food Bank is determined to keep helping people for as long as we can, but we hope that eventually these centres will no longer be necessary.”  

A spokesperson on behalf of the Colchester businesses said, “Collectively as a group, we decided to donate our funds to the foodbank to support the families and individuals who are struggling to purchase food this winter. We are all in a position to provide that financial support, so it was an easy decision to make. We would like to extend our thanks to the foodbank, and The Trussell Trust, for their efforts in supporting our local community.” 

Reverse Advent Calendar 2022

This year, our staff at The Mackman Group will also be participating in the Reverse Advent Calendar initiative. This idea presented itself as a way to give back to our local community, encouraging others to give as well as receive during what can occasionally be a difficult time of year. At the end of December, we will donate all the items to a Sudbury-based foodbank in time for Christmas.