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To use a Food Bank?

(17 Posts)
nearlystarvingartist Tue 20-Jan-15 18:40:09

I am worried. I lost my job, applied for benefits, but there is a delay, although I am very optimistic I will be back in work in a short time because I have 2 interviews coming up and still waiting to hear back from more jobs which I think I have a good chance of getting.

I have bills to pay and rent, including for my phone contract which I will be cancelling anyway but have to pay next one, and some credit card payments that need to be made as I have already negotiated the smallest amount possible.

It's in my mind that I could buy some food shopping before these payments come out and let the direct debits bounce, and run up some extra charges but hopefully will have a job quickly and can suck it up soon with wages. The other half of me is thinking would it be ok for me to use a food bank in this situation to cover the gap? From what I can see, they give you 3 days food for 1 person, and I'm sure if I got this I could stretch it much further into over a week's worth of meals. I don't eat that much and I have some rice and frozen veg in, as well as things like spices.

AIBU to get a food parcel in this situation? Be blunt but please don't rip me to peaces, I'm just trying to get to a more secure place financially.

iwantavuvezela Tue 20-Jan-15 18:42:46

Yes, you should do this. Give yourself a little break from worry, and you can focus on the other parts of your life. Good luck with your job interviews.

InfinitySeven Tue 20-Jan-15 18:43:15

Most food banks require a referral these days. You'll need to meet their criteria. If you do, get a food parcel and don't feel guilty about it.

They might ask about your finances, and what food you already have. It really depends on the scheme. They are quite generous around me, so they'll ask the questions but give you food regardless, and it tends to be good quality. It could be different in other places, though.

FightOrFlight Tue 20-Jan-15 18:43:18

Foodbanks are there for people in need. If you are in need (and it sounds as if you are) then you are entitled to use it.

You do know that you have to be referred to the Foodbank by an agency (Social Services etc.) you can't just access it.

Marmiteandjamislush Tue 20-Jan-15 18:45:44

YANBU. You can't afford to buy food at the moment. Why you can't afford to buy food is of no concern to the FB. Just do your very best to make your situation stable asap and make a big donation when you have money again. However, some require evidence of lack of benefits, so I don't know how that will work for you.

ILovePud Tue 20-Jan-15 18:45:45

Why would this be unreasonable? You sound like you're in a really tough situation and this could be eased by going to a foodbank. I think delays to benefits cause people huge problems and are one of the main reasons people access foodbanks for the first time. I'd contact your local foodbank and see how you can go about getting a referral. Hope that you can find work and that things start to look up for you soon.

TheReluctantCountess Tue 20-Jan-15 18:45:48

If you can get help from them, do it. It's a downward spiral once you let things start to bounce and get more and more charges.

FightOrFlight Tue 20-Jan-15 18:46:27

Check with your local CAB if you qualify, they can refer you

"Frontline care professionals identify people in need
Care professionals such as doctors, health visitors, social workers, CAB and police identify people in crisis and issue them with a foodbank voucher. Foodbanks partner with a wide range of care professionals who are best placed to assess need and make sure that it is genuine"

www.trusselltrust.org/how-it-works

MrsTerryPratchett Tue 20-Jan-15 18:46:52

I have worked in homelessness, SS and charities. USE THE FOOD BANK. Sorry to shout. Don't get into debt and ruin your credit in order to not use it.

If you get a new job quickly and all works out, give the food bank a donation for double. You've paid it forward then.

I see food banks as an investment in our community which, unlike payday loan companies, don't charge interest. I only wish we didn't need them.

Hatespiders Tue 20-Jan-15 18:46:56

I sincerely feel for you and admire your courage and effort to get things back on track. Do you know of a food bank near you? One has to have an authorisation from one of several agencies, but the staff at the food bank could advise you on your eligibility and how to get your 3 days' supply.
The delay in arranging benefits is a very common reason for people in your situation to be short of food.
I do hope you can get the food sorted out.
Good luck with your interviews!

CurbsideProphet Tue 20-Jan-15 18:47:34

Y A N B U. As others have said you will usually need to be referred by your GP, the Job Centre, or Social Services.

Check out The Trussel Trust for foodbanks in your area and information about them.

Best wishes to you smile

Idontseeanysontarans Tue 20-Jan-15 18:48:14

Go to CAB and see if you qualify. If you do, use the food bank - it's there for a reason! Don't let any payments bounce on the hope that a new job is round the corner.
YANBU at all, I hope they can help you thanks

EnidB Tue 20-Jan-15 18:48:59

I agree with ILovePud it doesn't sound unreasonable. Find out how you get referred and take some pressure off. Good luck

IssyStark Tue 20-Jan-15 18:51:19

Contact them. They can only say no.

If they say yes and you do get job soon and get back on your feet financially (good luck with the interviews btw), then you can always donate to the Food Bank by way of thank you. What goes around, comes around.

QuestionsaboutDS Tue 20-Jan-15 18:53:29

Absolutely - if you can get a referral then do it with a clear conscience - this sort of temporary wage/benefit gap is the reason for loads of food bank useage and it's exactly what they're there for.

Donate back when you're on your feet again if you can - but don't feel guilty whatever.

Pumpkinpositive Tue 20-Jan-15 18:57:11

I used to volunteer at a soup kitchen. Most of the regulars came in everyday for the evening meal, which was free. The menu consisted of soup (meat or veggie), various meat or cheese sandwiches and tea/coffee/squash and a cake. Banal and repetitive, but fairly nutritious.

People were free to stay and eat in the dining hall or take their food away in a bag. Quite a few people used to take enough sandwiches for their breakfast/lunch the next day and even when management wasn't looking leftover milk or tea bags.

If I were experiencing financial hardship, I'd have no qualms about picking up food there.

Good luck with the job interviews! thanks

betweenmarchandmay Tue 20-Jan-15 18:59:32

Don't see why it would be unreasonable; I think a lot of people think that they should be one step away from starvation which is unlikely!

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