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Friday, 22 August 2014

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New foodbank launched in west Cumbria

A new foodbank has been launched in west Cumbria to cope with rising demand.

The North Lakes Foodbank, based in Cockermouth, has decided to open a facility in Maryport.

It comes after new figures showed hundreds of people were approaching the service for help as they battle to cope with rising living costs.

Vouchers are being given to people in all five wards in the town.

The voucher numbers in Flimby have increased from nine to 39 people, a rise of 333.3 per cent.

Ellenborough increased from 65 to 168 people, a rise of 158.4 per cent, with 96 children using the vouchers compared with 26 the year before.

Netherhall went up by 156.5 per cent, Ellen by 94.1 per cent and Ewanrigg by 22 per cent.

The Rev Susan McKendrey, of St Mary’s Church, said that if people could not afford food it was unlikely they could afford the cost of travelling to Workington or Cockermouth to collect goods from the foodbank.

The service will open at St Mary’s Church with it opening daily from 8.30am to 5pm.

Training for foodbank volunteers will begin at 7.30pm and everyone is welcome to attend.

People can volunteer to distribute food, talk to people to direct them to helping agencies or simply tea or help with dishes, Mrs McKendrey said.

The foodbank is one of a number of community initiatives being set up at the church, some of which will be funded by the sale of Christ Church.

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