Slough Foodbank opens Distribution Centre in Britwell in response to unprecedented demand for help for those in crisis with food poverty across Slough.
Slough Foodbank has opened Britwell Distribution Centre, on Saturdays 10am to 12 noon at Britwell Parish Community Hall, Long Furlong Drive, Slough, Berkshire, SL2 2PH. Everyone attending the Distribution Centre must have a valid e-referral from one of over 170 referral agencies.
Slough Foodbank has witnessed first-hand the devastating effect the Covid-19 pandemic has had on the people of Slough and the surrounding areas. We published statistics on the first 6 months of 2020 where we witnessed a 42% increase in the number of vouchers being issued versus the same period in 2019. Shockingly the number of children requiring our help was increased by 72% – reflecting the number of families who are being impacted and suffering a crisis due to hunger and food poverty. It is due to this level of demand that Britwell Distribution Centre has opened.
Slough Foodbank Manager, Sue Sibany-King commented:
“At Slough Foodbank, every day we see the real effect the Coronavirus is having on the people of Slough. It is not just a health issue but a financial issue that has exacerbated the dire situation many clients were already in. Until the government implements a living wage or benefits that are sufficient to cover basic costs of food and rent, sadly foodbanks will continue to pick up the pieces of a broken system. We do not celebrate the opening of a new Distribution Centre, it is not something we want to be doing. We wish we lived in a society where there was no need for Foodbanks. However, we are thankful to our volunteers and supporters who enable Slough Foodbank to provide emergency food to people who are going hungry.”
Preston Brooker, Mayor of Slough, Britwell Parish Vice Chair commented:
“Today as Britwell Parish Vice Chair and Mayor of Slough, I am pleased to welcome Slough Foodbank to Britwell Parish Community Hall, otherwise known as ‘The Chicken Ranch’. I would like to thank Britwell Parish Council for providing the hall free of charge and Slough Foodbank for providing a food bank facility in the parish hall. I wish Slough Foodbank well in this new venture.”
The opening of a Distribution Centre in the middle of a pandemic is not without its complexities. However, as we have kept 3 other Distribution Centres (Slough, Langley and Cippenham) open throughout the pandemic we have robust systems in place and procedures to ensure covid-19 compliance and social distancing measures. These include:
- Temperature checks
- Hand gel
- Face coverings
- Social Distancing of 2 meters
- Track and trace recording
- Disinfectant cleaning of chairs and other high touch surfaces
We continue to focus on our primary aim of supporting clients who are in food poverty because they do not have enough money to buy food by providing three days’ nutritionally balanced emergency food and support to local people who are referred to us in crisis.