SHOPPERS are being urged to donate food after it was revealed the number of people in Doncaster who cannot afford to feed themselves has more than tripled.
The Doncaster North MP Ed Miliband will join volunteers from Food Aware - which operates three food banks across the borough - at two supermarkets tomorrow to help collect donations of tinned and dried foods.
‘Donation stalls’ will be set up at the Co-op on Selby Road, Askern, from 9.30am to 10.30am, and at Morrisons, on York Road, from 10am to 11am.
All the donated items will then be handed to Food Aware, the not-for-profit social enterprise, which is based in Mexborough.
Mr Miliband said: “In the past year too many people across Doncaster have had to turn to food banks because they simply don’t have enough money to make ends meet. The number of people using Food Aware has tripled.
“Some of the people using their services are hard-working families whose wages can’t last them for the whole month.
“It’s an issue I have already raised with David Cameron, and I will continue to ask questions. The government must take food poverty seriously before this situation deteriorates.
“As food and energy prices carry on going up, this is a problem that could get worse.”
In Doncaster last year, Food Aware’s food banks handed out the equivalent of 10,000 meals to families who could not afford to put one on the table. The organisation hopes to open up to another seven food banks across the borough.
Managing director Sean Gibbons said: “The volunteers who help to run our food banks do an excellent job, but we rely on donations and demand is rising at the moment.
“I’d encourage anyone who can spare something, even if it is just a tin of food, to come along and give it to one of our volunteers”.
“We now have three official food banks in Doncaster, based in Conisbrough, Intake and Balby.
“Food Aware feeds around 1,200 people per week across South Yorkshire in partnership with other organisations.”
An ‘eat well’ food box costs £2.50, but free boxes are available to those who need them.
The three food banks are open on Fridays from 11am to 1pm at Castle Street, Conisbrough; 45 Montrose Avenue, Intake; and St James’ Church, St Sepulchre Gate West.