Norwich Foodbank demand surges by 74pc amid coronavirus

Norwich Foodbank has changed their delivery model to send out more parcels during lockdown. Pictured

Norwich Foodbank has changed their delivery model to send out more parcels during lockdown. Pictured, left to right, Hannah Worsley (Foodbank project manager), Pam Broughton (Foodbank volunteer), Barbara Moore (Foodbank volunteer) and Helen Tuttle (Norfolk Community Foundation marketing executive). Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

Norwich Foodbank has seen a 74pc rise in demand - and passed the unwanted milestone of delivering more than 1,000 parcels in April.

Project manager Hannah Worsley . PHOTO: Nick Butcher

Project manager Hannah Worsley . PHOTO: Nick Butcher - Credit: Nick Butcher

The foodbank received 664 vouchers over three weeks from March 23 compared to 382 vouchers for the same period last year.

The number of people fed by the foodbank, which delivered over 1,000 parcels last month, has also jumped to 1,646 in contrast to 861 last year - a 91pc increase.

Its ability to meet rising demand has been made possible by changes to the delivery model, which operates from the foodbank’s main warehouse unit in Earlham, and support by new volunteers - enabling 50 boxes a day to be delivered directly to people’s homes.

Both Henderson Trust, which owns the warehouse, and Viking Self Storage in Norwich have contributed to the foodbank, by giving extra warehouse space and free cardboard boxes, tape and tape dispensers.

Cardboard box manufacturer Smurfit Kappa has also increased its donations of boxes.

Hannah Worsley, project manager at Norwich Foodbank, said: “We are extremely grateful to Viking for their ongoing support of our work through additional storage and the recent gift of supplies.

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“We are also thankful to the public for continuing to give food items, give financially and also to those who have joined us as volunteers, as well as many other businesses, churches and individuals who have donated and encouraged us at this time.

“This has been a very challenging few weeks whilst we have put new plans into place, but we are pleased that those who have needed us during this time have still received food, albeit in a different way.”

James Merrells, operations manager for Viking Self Storage, said: “We are so pleased to be able to support the robust work of the Norwich foodbank, especially at this difficult time.

“Their willingness to change so drastically to continue to support the local community is truly admirable and is a testimony to their determination and resilience.”

Donations to support the work of the Norwich Foodbank can be made either as a one-off or a regular payment. Visit and click ‘Donate Online’.