Sheffield residents call for action to tackle poverty hunger

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Star readers have been debating about how to tackle poverty hunger – after it emerged more than 35, 000 emergency parcels were handed out at foodbanks across the Sheffield City Region in a year.

The Trussell Trust charity revealed 35, 750 three-day emergency food parcels were distributed from their foodbanks across SCR – which includes all of South Yorkshire, plus parts of Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire – in 2018/19.

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Perhaps most alarmingly, the data showed 12,155 packages – about a third – were handed out to children.

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Foodbank.  Foodbank.

Within this, Burngreave Foodbank provided 1599 three day emergency food parcels to the community in the same time-frame.

The data has sparked debate among readers on the Star's Facebook page.

Hayley Williams said: “It is time courses in budgeting were available. Too many people don't seem to know how to manage their money - employed and unemployed.

“Perhaps this is something that could be taught at secondary school level too so school leavers are better equipt for the world that awaits them?”

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Sandra Davies added: “So many people (are) trying to blame the people needing foodbanks for their circumstances.

People are referred to foodbanks by outside agencies like charities, social services, social housing landlords, etc.

“Unless you’re known and referred by them, you can’t use them. There’s no turning up because you’ve spent up on booze and cigarettes.”

Becky Hubbard posted: “People are only a pay cheque away from falling on hard times.”

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The Trussell Trust claimed demand for food parcels has risen nationally since the Government rolled out the Universal Credit benefits system.

But the Department for Work and Pensions said it is “not true” people need to wait five weeks for their first payment as it is available to claimants on “day one.”

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