“This food’s better in a belly than in a bin.
“We started our first food pantry about three years ago. We did a pilot and it was very successful … well, we couldn’t just stop. People were still going to be hungry.
“We’d just opened a second pantry in 2020 when Covid hit and we knew more people would need help.
“We’ve given out about 2,500 bags of food in the last year, helping a massive range of people – people who are homeless, low-income families, pensioners who are struggling or can’t get out to the shops. We supplied food for 450 families at Christmas as well as 200 hampers for pensioners. They had a tremendous response – the smiles on people’s faces!
“I get regular phonecalls from people who are desperate. We’ve got a good network of organisations who can refer people to us and there’s not the same bureaucracy so we can go and help people out, no questions asked, it’s just done quietly.
“It’s about providing people with some security so they’re not going to bed on an empty stomach.
“We couldn’t do it without FareShare. There were 21 of us groups to begin with. Now there are nearly 200. It just tells you what’s going on in the country when there are so many food pantries and food banks needed.
“It’s humbling to be able to help people but also concerning.”
Antony McGuckin – Vice President, Workington Derwent Rotary Club