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A record number of Britons are relying on food banks

A record number of Britons are relying on food banks

International Economy

More Britons than ever are having to turn to one of the country's food banks to make ends meet. Archive photo. Photo: AP/TT

Great Britain (TT)

More Britons than ever are having to turn to one of the country's food banks to make ends meet.

“Often we feel like our help is not enough,” Sabine Goodwin of the aid group Evan told the Observer.

Nearly 90 per cent of UK food banks have seen a significant increase in visitors in the past two months compared to the same period last year, a survey has shown. From Ivan (Independent Food Aid Network).

Half of the food banks surveyed also say they will have to reduce assistance, or turn away new people applying for operations, if the need continues to increase. The observer writes.

Businesses are also seeing that rising food and energy prices in recent years have led to new groups such as healthcare staff and teachers now increasingly joining the visitors.

“Many are losing their status.”

According to Sabine Goodwin, a coordinator at Evan, there are also many indicators that the situation for many Britons will get worse.

It is clear that during the winter many people tried to manage their affairs with borrowed money and accumulated debts, which means that they will eventually lose their position, as she told the British newspaper.

Food inflation in the UK has been at a record high of 16.4 per cent for some time, the highest level since 1977. In particular, prices of staple foods such as milk, butter, cheese and eggs have risen – putting pressure on the country's budget. Food banks have increased at a rapid rate.

Inflation behind the strike wave

Rampant inflation as well as record high energy prices were behind the wave of strikes that shook the country in recent months. Among other things, nurses, ambulance personnel, and teachers stopped their work in protest against the deteriorating living conditions.

The growing need for help among Britons is putting a heavy workload on volunteers who work at the country's food banks, according to Sabine Goodwin.

– We endure, but the need never ends. As a volunteer, she often feels like our help is not enough, she tells the Observer.

Anna Grunberg/TT

facts

According to the Trussell Trust, which runs more than 1,300 food banks in the UK, the need for help in the country has never been greater this winter.

More than 14.5 million people live in poverty in the UK, according to the Joseph Rowntree charity. 4.3 million of them are children.

Food inflation in the country has reached a record high of 16.4 percent, while gas costs are almost 130 percent higher than a year ago.

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