New Halo Centre opens as Coventry Foodbank teams up with global charity to offer more 'holistic' support - The Coventry Observer

17th Aug, 2022

New Halo Centre opens as Coventry Foodbank teams up with global charity to offer more 'holistic' support

AS DEMAND increases, Coventry Foodbank is joining forces with global Christian charity Feed the Hungry to tackle the emergency food crisis and offer more holistic support.

A 25,000 square foot warehouse in Coventry – the new Hale Centre – has been repurposed by Feed the Hungry in an attempt to provide long-term solutions to the current food crisis bringing together numerous local and national partnerships.

Day-to-day food bank support will continue as before, with people struggling to afford food still able to access emergency food at the food bank’s 17 centres in the city. But in the future people will also be able to access a wide range of support with business mentors, work clubs, clothes recycling, and advice on welfare, debt, health and wellbeing.

Gwyn Williams, operations director for Feed the Hungry, an evangelical said: “The Halo project is, at its core, about transforming the most deprived communities in the UK. We believe that journey is most effectively enacted when the local church acts together. And this is not simply about getting food to people, but a holistic approach to support.

“The Covid pandemic has impacted us all – but those living in or near the poverty line have been disproportionately impacted. The great work of campaigners such as Marcus Rashford have highlighted the need to provide emergency food, and we are hugely grateful to the Trussell Trust for the work they have been doing locally and across the country to meet that need. The solutions must be long term to ensure those families are given the opportunity to not only survive but build a sustainable future for themselves.”

Coventry Foodbank was established in 2011 as part of the Trussell Trust’s national network of food banks and quickly became one of the largest in the country.

Earlier this month the Trussell Trust reported a 47% rise in food parcels during the first six months of the pandemic. It distributed 1.2m food parcels, of which 470,000 went to families with children.

Gavin Kibble, founder of the Coventry Foodbank, said: “We are very proud of the impact we have been able to have over the past ten years we have been working in Coventry. But the needs are greater now than ever – we need not only a short term solution but one that is both holistic and long term. We need to support individuals and families with the root causes of hunger, as well as providing emergency food.”

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