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Food bank demand soared by more than 50 per cent during the coronavirus pandemic – and staff are braced for another rise this winter.

The biggest spike was in April during the height of the pandemic when Black Country Food Bank, which serves 23 centres in Dudley, Sandwell and Walsall, saw a 58 per cent increase in usage from 2019.

Between January and July, the Brierley Hill-based organisation served around 2,000 more people than they did during the same period last year, dishing out 169,580 meals. In April, an extra 699 adults and 346 children sought food parcels on the same month last year.

New figures reveal a similar rise in demand was experienced at Cannock and District Food Bank as well as the Good Shepherd Ministry in Wolverhampton.

With local lockdowns now in place across much of the West Midlands and furlough ending, food bank volunteers say they are expecting demand to rise significantly again.

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source: Express & Star
published: 21 September 2021

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