Information for referral agencies and community partners

3rd April 2020

We want to let you know about the changes that will take place at our foodbank following the coronavirus guidance issued by the government.

As we know, foodbanks are experiencing increased demand over the last few years and have become an essential community service to support people in times of crisis. It is our aim to continue to deliver these much-needed services as the coronavirus situation deepens.  To achieve this, we need your support to help ensure those most in need can access our service at this uncertain time.

Changes implemented from Monday 30th March 2020 are as follows:

  • Introducing pre-packed food-parcels that can be handed out quickly to lessen contact
  • Suspending advocacy services and catering to reduce the risk of Covid-19 transmission
  • Changing our opening times to:
  • Monday 10am-1pm at The Venerable Bede Church, NE4 8AQ
  • Tuesday 10am-1pm at Benwell Lane, NE15 6LX
  • Wednesday 10am-1pm at Benwell Lane, NE15 6LX
  • Thursday 10am-1pm at The Venerable Bede Church, NE4 8AQ

We are making these changes to enable fewer volunteers to deliver an efficient service that is responsive to a growth in service user demand. To comply with government guidance on social distancing and recommended hygiene practices we have introduced 2 metre distancing measures, a reduced number of people on site at the same time and signage displayed to reinforce these safety messages.

Please consider the following criteria before referring someone to Foodbank

  • Only refer people who are unable to afford food. We understand that many people are unable to access shops due to illness or self-isolation. However, we urge you to only refer people who are unable to afford food.
  • Support with delivering food to people who cannot get to the food bank. A completed food voucher must be produced by staff or volunteers when collecting food parcels on behalf of the people you refer or intend to collect and deliver food to their homes.
  • Let us know of any changes to your service. If you choose to close or reduce your services, please send us the details of any alternative arrangements you put in place.

Our main concern is keeping people safe, closely followed by food distribution to vulnerable people unable to access food as the Coronavirus situation unfolds in our community.  Maintaining our services and access to food is our priority.  With your help, we hope to be able to ensure no one falls through this safety net. Please contact Laura for details:  [email protected] or phone: 0191 275 3019 –

We are working closely with Newcastle City Council to ensure that people who need help obtaining food can get the assistance they require.  It is recommended that anyone who is unable to get to the shops but is able to afford to buy food supplies should contact Newcastle City Council, CityLife Line: (find them online here) or call the helpline on 0191 277 8000 for assistance.

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