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Replenishing supplies...Liz Nolan and Janish Kareem at the foodbank. PHOTO: CHRIS TOBIN

by Chris Tobin

Demand for Presbyterian Support South Canterbury’s foodbank has doubled in the past 12 months.

Timaru Family Works manager Liz Nolan said it had increased its services slightly, but there had been a significant rise in demand.

out 20 to 25 food parcels a month – it’s now 40 to 50 a month.”

The foodbank operates for families being assisted by Family Works.

Mrs Nolan said the families who required its services budgeted well.

“They’ve really great budgeting skills but what we’re seeing is their incomes are not enough to meet costs.”

Some were working, but the majority were not and often it would be the urgent need for a replacement washing machine or children’s school uniforms which would stretch their finances.

“Our food parcels are not full with groceries; they’re supplementary and very much food basics – pasta, rices, breakfast cereals.”

Mrs Nolan said Family Works was pleased to receive a grant of $10,000 from the Community Trust of Mid and South Canterbury to support the foodbank as Christmas approached.

“We’re really fortunate that we got $14,000 from the trust last year and they have supported us with $10,000, which is fantastic.

“For the first time we will be able to buy meat for our food parcels. We’ve never been able to buy meat before.”

Timaru also has foodbanks run by the Salvation Army and St Vincent de Paul.

Ten other groups received grants in the latest funding round from the Community Trust.

These included the South Canterbury Justices of the Peace Association ($1922 to buy new technology), Thistle AFC ($5680 to install new heat pumps in the clubrooms), St Peter’s Anglican Church Temuka ($2500 for a mobility ramp), South Canterbury Amateur Athletics Club ($3325 towards track hire for the season) and Geraldine Arts and Plants Festival ($2000 towards festival costs).