Express readers thanked for helping fill empty Wakefield food bank

5th June 2013. The Bishop of Pontefract Rt Revd Tony Robinson, who will be fasting all week, helps pack food bags at St Catherine's Church Centre in Wakefield.
5th June 2013. The Bishop of Pontefract Rt Revd Tony Robinson, who will be fasting all week, helps pack food bags at St Catherine's Church Centre in Wakefield.
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A food bank that was struggling to cope with demand is helping more and more people thanks to an appeal in the Express.

In February we reported that desperate families who could no longer afford to eat were walking more than six miles to pick up food parcels from St Catherine’s Church on Doncaster Road.

The food bank was in urgent need of donations because of an unprecedented increase in demand from people who have nowhere else to turn.

But Rev Helen Collins said generous donations have since enabled them to help more people than ever with 463 parcels handed out already this year.

She said: “We had a significant response after the article appeared and now have fantastic regular donations from individuals and groups. We also get leftover bread from Greggs, which we freeze and handout as and when its needed.

“Donations are still always very welcome though.”

The food parcels contain essential basics including pasta and tinned vegetables. On Wednesday, the Bishop of Pontefract, The Rt Rev Tony Robinson, visited the church to help raise awareness of global poverty ahead of the G8 summit.

He also took part in a national fasting event for the cause.

Rev Collins added: “The Bishop’s visit helped draw attention to the fact that it is not just in third world countries that people are starving, there are people going hungry here too. It is not uncommon for people to come in who have not eaten at all that day, and it’s a situation that literally anyone can find themselves in almost overnight, if they suddenly have debts they can’t pay or the bedroom tax has left them short.”

The church also helps people with advice on how to deal with debt problems and also holds a job club.

To make a donation to the food bank, which is open Mon to Fri from 11am until 1pm, visit the church or call 01924 211130.