Foodbank collection at Norwich City Premier League match to meet soaring demand

PUBLISHED: 16:04 13 January 2014 | UPDATED: 16:06 13 January 2014

Project manager, Grant Habershon, amongst the donations of food that has been pouring into the Norwich  Foodbank. Picture: Denise Bradley

Project manager, Grant Habershon, amongst the donations of food that has been pouring into the Norwich Foodbank. Picture: Denise Bradley

copyright: Archant 2013

Foodbank volunteers will call on the support of Canaries fans at Carrow Road this weekend, as new figures show a dramatic leap in demand in the past 12 months.

Norwich Foodbank fed 8,920 people, including 2,855 children, in 2013 – a 60% increase on 2012’s figure of 5,586 people.

More than 50 volunteers will be shaking buckets and asking for donations to the charity at Norwich City’s Premier League clash with Hull City on Saturday, to buy emergency food supplies for people in crisis.

The collection follows the huge success of the Norwich Evening News’s Christmas foodbank campaign, during which readers donated more than 10 tonnes of food, and bosses hope it will serve as a reminder that people in Norfolk need emergency food all the year round.

Grant Habershon, project manager of Norwich Foodbank, said the charity already had strong links with the football club, with joint majority shareholder Delia Smith a patron, and chief executive David McNally a known supporter.

“We are asking for monetary donations because although we are well stocked at the moment, there will be times when we are not and we will have to buy food,” he said.

“The money collected will be added to the £2,500 donated during the Christmas campaign, and will then be split evenly between all of the foodbanks in Norfolk, Waveney and Wisbech, so that it benefits as many people in need as possible.”

The volunteers have been provided by Norfolk rotary clubs, as part of their long-running support of the county’s foodbanks.

A spokesman for the football club confirmed the collection, adding: “We agree to a number of such collections for charities each season and we’re delighted to include such a worthy cause as the Norwich Foodbank, who provide emergency food to local people in crisis.”

In Great Yarmouth, shadow international development minister Gavin Shuker joined Labour’s parliamentary candidate Lara Norris on a visit to the Herbies drop-in centre and the town’s foodbank. It has seen a 25% increase in demand in the past year.

Mr Shuker said: “People are struggling with the rising cost of living.”

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