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Food banks see increase in child poverty in north Norfolk

PUBLISHED: 12:32 09 July 2019 | UPDATED: 09:38 10 July 2019

Pictured at the Cromer and District Foodbank’s warehouse are (from left) joint project manager Tim Morton, chairman Pete Wenham, trustee Fiona Hall, and Victory Housing Trust chief executive John Archibald. Picture: Andy Newman

Pictured at the Cromer and District Foodbank's warehouse are (from left) joint project manager Tim Morton, chairman Pete Wenham, trustee Fiona Hall, and Victory Housing Trust chief executive John Archibald. Picture: Andy Newman

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The Cromer and District Foodbank has seen a 10pc increase in the number of children they are feeding.

Mat Armitage of Norfolk Citizens Advice and Ella King of Cromer District Foodbank.

Picture: MARK BULLIMOREMat Armitage of Norfolk Citizens Advice and Ella King of Cromer District Foodbank. Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

This year the food bank, run by the Trussell Trust, has fed 3,266 people with emergency food, 1,295 of whom were children.

The number of children being fed by the food bank has risen from 1,140 in 2017-2018, a 10pc increase.

Tim Morton, project manager at Cromer and District Foodbank, on Hall Road, said: "We deal with 3,000 people too many, our aim is to close and shut down but I don't think that will happen any time soon.

"It is so upsetting that children are affected by poverty. Child poverty is a difficult issue but we are not just going to ignore it, we are aware of it."

Cromer & District Foodbank. 
Picture: ANTONY KELLYCromer & District Foodbank. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

The food bank, which provides essential food items for people in crisis, has seven distribution centres open across north Norfolk.

They work closely with local children's centres to provide nappies, wipes, formula milk and other items.

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Citizens' advice is also available at three of the distribution centres including Sheringham, Cromer and Stalham.

Cromer & District Foodbank. Kevin Willimott.
Picture: ANTONY KELLYCromer & District Foodbank. Kevin Willimott. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Mr Morton said: "Every day people in the UK go hungry for reasons such as redundancy, low income or illness. A simple box of food makes a big difference."

Food banks partner with a wide range of care professionals such as doctors, health visitors, social workers and police to identify people in crisis and issue them with a food bank voucher.

Recipients then bring their voucher to a food bank where it can be redeemed for three days' emergency food.

Volunteers meet clients over a warm drink or free hot meal and are able to signpost people to agencies able to solve the longer-term problem.

Cromer & District Foodbank. 
Picture: ANTONY KELLYCromer & District Foodbank. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Mr Morton said: "People often think that people just turn up to a food bank and get free food, that is not the case at all.

"We have a start and end point, we help people find the relevant help they need."

Anybody who wishes to donate or has questions should contact Mr Morton on 07826 376343 or email info@cromerdistrict.foodbank.org.uk.

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