Food bank gears up for busiest time of year

Food banks are facing the busiest December yet as new figures suggest record number of people in crisis will need support ahead of Christmas says Jon Taylor of the Brixton and Norwood food bank.


Norwood and Brixton foodbank
Norwood and Brixton foodbank

The Norwood and Brixton Foodbank is concerned that new figures from December 2018, taken alongside the increase in food bank parcels needed so far this year, indicate more people than ever will need help from a food bank this Christmas.

National data released by the Trussell Trust shows December 2018 was the busiest month for food banks. Some 186,185 three-day emergency food parcels were provided to people in crisis; 78,536 of these went to children. This is 44% higher than the monthly average for the 2018-19 financial year.

Our own local figures tell a similar story and we too have seen a further increase in the numbers using our foodbank this year.

It’s not all doom and gloom though. Each year on the last Saturday before Christmas (this year it will be on Saturday, 21 December) we give out our Christmas hampers to those in our community struggling for food to help them through the Christmas period. Thanks to generous donations, we can give out fresh vegetables, fruit, seasonal treats and chocolate in addition to our regular food parcels.

Volunteer packing for FoodBank
Volunteer packing for FoodBank

For many of our guests these hampers make an incredible impact and ensure they will not be hungry on Christmas day. We are hopeful that with more generous donations this year we will continue to provide this essential seasonal service.

Last year, one of our guests said: “The Christmas hampers we receive are like gold dust. My family would have a rubbish Christmas without the food we get. We would be hungry. I love getting fresh veg, I save it and we have a feast on Christmas day.”

We currently have plenty of food donations so if you are thinking of donating, we would love for you to donate financially and help us cover the cost of providing vital support to people in our community instead.

We have a number of new initiatives to suit your donating preferences, including our text to donate service – simply texting ‘dinner 5’ or ‘dinner 10’ to 70085 enables you to donate the corresponding amount through your phone. See all options available to you below.

Thank you so much to everyone who has supported our foodbank this year, we are so grateful for the continuous support you provide and continue to be overwhelmed by your generosity. We wish you all a very joyful festive period and a wonderful new year.


Visit our webpage to donate online via VIRGIN GIVING.

TEXT dinner 5 to 70085 to donate £5

TEXT dinner 10 to 70085 to donate £10

This costs £5 or £10 plus a standard rate message

Set up a STANDING ORDER and if you are a UK tax-payer you can
GIFT AID on any donation you make at:


BANKUET is an easy way to donate food via an online shop. It reduces waste and ensures we get the items we need:

FOODBANK APP – you can check while in store exactly what is needed and target current shortages and avoid waste:

Check our website for latest shopping lists and requests. We’ve created a postcard with ways you can donate.