The Rotary Club of Clacton on Sea proposed the launch of a foodbank in 2012 and quickly learned of an existing small scale scheme being operated by the Salvation Army, supported by the local Churches Together organisation. It was decided to combine the efforts of these groups to form a strong partnership, which culminated in the Clacton Foodbank scheme, administered by the Salvation Army Community Manager Tracy Cooke and her team, and run from the Salvation Army Community Centre in Old Road, Clacton.
There are many pitfalls in setting up and administering a food bank scheme and it was decided at an early stage to seek affiliation with TheTrussell Trust, one of the largest Christian based charities in the UK with a network of more than three hundred foodbanks, to provide the tools, training and know-how needed to run the Clacton Foodbank efficiently so that people in crisis in our town don’t have to go hungry.
All food is donated by the public and sorted by volunteers. Frontline care professionals such as social workers and Citizens Advice identify people in crisis and issue a food voucher. Clients receive three days of nutritionally balanced, non-perishable food in exchange for their food voucher.
Foodbanks are now recognised to help prevent crime, housing loss, family breakdown and mental health problems. A simple box of food makes a big difference. Shoppers can make a donation of non-perishable food at any time in the Clacton Foodbank Dropbox in the Tesco foyer at Brook Farm.
The Clacton Foodbank scheme is growing steadily with the help of key players Tesco, Tending District Council, the local care professionals, its team of volunteers and of course the general public, whose response to appeals for food donations has been amazing. It was with a sigh of relief, therefore, that the Clacton Foodbank, which had been operational since November 2013, finally took over their new central storage facility in April 2014. Donated food had up until then been stored in a variety of locations around the town, which made both stock taking, distribution and expansion of the service extremely difficult.
More recently Clacton Rotary Club has funded the purchase of much needed additional shelving.
Clacton Foodbank is open for food distribution at the Salvation Army Community Centre on Tuesdays and Thursdays 9.30am – 11am and Fridays 2pm – 3.30pm. Food is only distributed in exchange for Food Vouchers.
Visit the Clacton FoodBank website HERE