Bethany Community Outreach opened their food bank in 2015 using their church as the base. After just a few years the need got too great, forcing them to look for new premises in the Erdington area. In 2017 they were offered a warehouse on the old colliers site in Erdington. Whilst there the work expanded significantly and the number of people using the food bank more than doubled. They began working with different organisations such as local housing associations to provide food for their clients. In 2019 the food bank moved again, this time to the old sofa shop. The continuous moving put a strain on the outreach and a more permanent premises was needed to secure the running of the food bank as Severn Capital needed their site back. During this year Bethany Community Outreach started working with an organisation called Clarion Futures to provide a digital hub for their clients. In January 2020 a unit in the Witton area of Birmingham was offered to the manager of the food bank which would ensure the continuation of the service. The work that they do has gone from strength to strength and we are now working with more organisations than ever before. This is why Bethany Community Outreach so desperately needs help to continue to serve the residents of the Birmingham area, many of whom would struggle without us.
Bethany Community Outreach seeks to relieve the financial hardship among people living or working in the Birmingham area by providing food, goods and services which they could not otherwise afford through lack of means. The main activities of the charity include a mother & toddlers group, a digital hub, and predominantly the emergency food bank. In addition to supporting those who are suffering financial hardship, we offer the opportunity for volunteers to gain work experience and benefit by developing new skills.
The majority of people who will use this service are jobseekers, the unemployed, and people who are now no longer able to access work or run their businesses. Since the lockdown, and as a result of the coronavirus many people are experiencing isolation, businesses are suffering and people’s income has suddenly come to a halt. Every month around 1000 clients of all backgrounds, ages and nationalities are provided with food.
The grant will be greatly received to help us provide for increasing demand.