Harborough food bank appealing for help

Volunteers Jane White and Colin Sole at Market Harborough's Jubilee Food Bank
Volunteers Jane White and Colin Sole at Market Harborough's Jubilee Food Bank

Market Harborough’s busy food bank is appealing for more helpers to keep the vital service going.

The Jubilee Foodbank is looking for a volunteer administrator and about half a dozen volunteer staff.

In a statement to the Harborough Mail, food bank volunteer Jane White said extra help was needed to make sure the food bank stayed open during office hours.

She said: “At the moment we are so stretched that we still have the odd day when the food bank is unable to open.

“Our biggest concern at the moment is finding enough volunteers to enable the foodbank to fulfil its aim of being on call from 9am to 5pm on every weekday.”

The Jubilee Foodbank first opened its doors in Market Harborough in February 2012 to give food to town people referred to the food bank who were in temporary need.

The theory was that there could be a need for such a facility even in an affluent town like Market Harborough.

Jane said: “The response was overwhelming; there clearly was a need.”

In the early days, the biggest difficulty was getting enough food donated.

But due to the amazing generosity of Harborough people, food donation is no longer a problem.

Now the need is for staff.

“Exactly how many staff really depends on how much time each individual is prepared to give,” added Jane.

She said the job was not always easy, because the Jubilee Foodbank does not hand out food from a shop facility as many other food banks do.

She explained: “We operate using a mobile phone. The day’s volunteer will receive a call from an agency who wishes to apply for a food parcel for someone, and the volunteer then has to go to our food storage facility, pack up three days’ worth of food and deliver it either to the agency or to the client, in a public venue.”

Jane said, ideally, volunteers should be able to drive.

The group would like to have two volunteers available every day, to make the job less onerous.

If you can help, email jubileefoodbankmh@gmail.com or speak to the group at its stand on The Square, Harborough, between 11am and 2pm on Friday, April 3.