As the coronavirus pandemic unfolds in the UK, our main priority is ensuring the safety of everyone who comes to our foodbank – whether it’s someone needing help, someone volunteering their time, or someone making a donation.
No one in our community should have to face going hungry. That’s why we provide nutritionally balanced food and support to local people who are referred to us. We are part of a nationwide network of foodbanks, supported by The Trussell Trust, working to combat poverty and hunger across the UK.
Covid19 is impacting the Epsom and Ewell Foodbank in a number of ways
1. We are sadly seeing increased demand across the Epsom & Ewell area and only expect this to get higher.
2. We are seeing a reduction in donations as people's shopping habits are changing.
3. A number of our regular volunteers are from at risk groups so unable to work currently.
We need your urgent help to fund the purchase the food that is required to fill this gap.
How you can help
If you can donate food then please donate at one of these locations - https://epsomewell.foodbank.org.uk/give-help/donate-food/
If you cannot get to these locations then please give to this Crowdfunder project that will allow us to purchase the food we need.
Thanks so much for all your support at this time of need.
More about Epsom and Ewell Foodbank
Our foodbank is a project founded by local churches and community groups, working together towards stopping hunger in our local area.
We usually run 5 centres, which means we have one open each day from Tuesdays through to Saturdays. Due to Covid-19 we have had to temporarily switch to home deliveries only.
After research and discussions with local agencies, visiting foodbanks already set up - including Kingston – we held a public meeting in July 2012 and to our amazement over 70 people turned up, people from all walks of life who were interested. The majority were supportive but in disbelief of the need. A few just dismissed the idea saying that ‘nobody in Epsom & Ewell goes to bed hungry at night’. Unfortunately we were able to disprove that theory as people were already being referred to Kingston foodbank from agencies in Epsom due to the need and lack of service at our end.
We opened in October 2012 with one centre in Ewell and one in Epsom, we then added Leatherhead and Tadworth in September 2013, and finally Banstead in November 2014. Since we opened we have seen a steady increase in need. We have now fed more than 23,000 since we opened. In 2019 we fed more than 5,300 people.
We generate approximately 200 hours of volunteering a week and have an amazing band of people who help out in so many different ways. We run from a Christian ethos but have people from all walks of life involved at all levels. It’s an amazing testament of the community working together, local people, churches, agencies, businesses and schools all doing their part.
To say that we are closing our doors due to the lack of need for our services would be fantastic, unfortunately we cannot see that happening soon, as more changes, caps to benefit and other economic hardships continue to hit local people hard.
What’s next and what’s the future plan?
The 42% increase we saw in 2019 drives us on even more to address the root causes of poverty. In 2019 we launched a new initiative called a Poverty Truth Commission. This is based on allowing people in poverty to tell their story so that we can begin to look at the causes and how to address them, leading hopefully to a foodbank exit strategy.
Moving forward, there are plenty of hills to climb and people to feed but based on the previous 7 years it will be exciting and rewarding as we are able to support people to move out of food poverty.
Over 90% of the food distributed by foodbanks in The Trussell Trust network is donated by the public – that’s why your food donations are absolutely vital to our ability to give everyone referred to us a balanced and nutritious three day supply of food.
If you are happy to drop off food donations, these are our food collection point locations:
- Waitrose, Epsom
- Waitrose, Banstead
- Tesco, Leatherhead (behind customer services)
- Sainsbury’s, Kiln Lane, Epsom
- Asda, Burgh Heath