Foodbank bosses say merger will let them help more people

THE newly formed South Sefton and Crosby Foodbank is hoping to mark its first year by helping as many local people as possible.

Staff and volunteers will aim to not only provide food, but also an all round service to prevent social isolation and any other issues facing its users.

There used to be a South Sefton Foodbank, located in Bootle, and a separate Crosby Foodbank before the two facilities merged last September to pull their resources together.

Based at Waterloo Town Hall, they are hoping to support thousands of people across the next year.

Debbie Shelley, the centre manager said: “The Trustees got together to discuss the merger and decided because we work closely anyway it would make sense. We already worked closely so it was the right decision and it’s been great ever since.

“I feel like we are going the same way as some of the bigger foodbanks in Liverpool in being very efficient and well-run.”

Having helped 1,200 people in December by giving out food vouchers, staff are keen to point out that they also support the community in different ways.

The foodbank is linked with around 120 different agencies so when a person comes in to collect food, volunteers can speak with them to see if they need any kind of specialist advice which could range from employment to financial support.

Gayle Connor-McCreith, the Foodbank co-ordinator added: “We have so many lovely volunteers who do so much and are so generous. They will speak with people who come in and they create a warm and friendly environment.

“People are open to speak with us because we want to improve their quality of life.

Foodbanks can bring communities together and that’s what we want to do.”

Crosby Foodbank was based at Waterloo Town Hall since 2013 and fed around 12,000 each year.

Still based at the same location, staff at South Sefton and Crosby Foodbank hope to be based at the council-run centre for “the long-term.”