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Cash plea as food bank expands to larger premises

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Pictured is Chairman of the New Forest Basics Bank Oliver Stanley
Pictured is Chairman of the New Forest Basics Bank Oliver Stanley

THE New Forest Basics Bank have launched an appeal to help fund their relocation to a bigger premises in Lymington.

Currently situated at the back of the United Reformed Church just off the High Street, the building appeal began after a lack of space forced the charity to purchase an external storage container which it says causes a “logistic nightmare” when managing stock.

The proposed new premises, behind Our Lady of Mercy & St Joseph Roman Catholic Church, also off the High Street, has been designed to accommodate all stock and offer further opportunities to help those in need.

Now that planning permission has been approved and most of the funding has been secured, the plans for the new building were revealed at a launch breakfast to begin their call for help to raise the remaining £50,000 needed.

NFBB chairman Oliver Stanley commented: "We normally help individuals and families for periods of up to six weeks. The demand for our services has increased 25% annually over the last three years and we currently help 2,500 individuals in the region. We are fortunate in that everyone working at NFBB is a volunteer."

The new building is planned to open in the spring of 2020, and will offer the charity the long-awaited space needed to deliver their service to those in the community who are in crisis, or in urgent need of assistance.

A CGI image of what the new premises will look like (Picture: Modulek Ltd)
A CGI image of what the new premises will look like (Picture: Modulek Ltd)

NFBB works alongside local referral agencies, including New Forest Citizen's Advice, CAP, Department for Work and Pensions, social services and health services as well as dispatching weekly food parcels to those who otherwise would go without.

A typical parcel from the food bank includes enough to provide a family meals for a week, normally containing tinned goods, sauces, dried pasta, rice and noodles, tea, coffee, biscuits, UHT milk, toiletries, loo rolls, cleaning materials, bread and much more.

Recipients of the packages occasionally express their reaction to receiving the parcels. One client from Pennington wrote: "I am so thankful for the food parcel that arrived, I was stressed out wondering how to feed my kids, and parcels arrived just in time."

Another from New Milton said: "I lost my job and am waiting for my benefits to kick in. It's been a few weeks so I am broke, and have no food. The food sent by the basics bank has really helped, and we are so grateful."

Mr Stanley added: "No charity can replace the dignity of having financial security. But at Basics Bank, we can help ease the struggle, and offer a significant emergency parcel to ensure those in need can feed themselves and their families."

The official Localgiving fund raising page can be found by visiting https://localgiving.org/appeal/basicsbank-newbuilding/

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