‘Food pantry would help community’

By Alexandra Bánfi   |   Reporter   |
Friday 8th July 2022 7:00 am
@AlexandraBanfi
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Machynlleth town centre
Machynlleth town centre (Cambrian News )

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A COMMUNITY food pantry would help to alleviate the cost-of-living crisis and the shame many feel going to a foodbank, according to one Machynlleth councillor.

Cllr Norma McCarten said the town’s community food group meets regularly, and through it, she has spoken to Clive and Helena Thomas, who run the local Bro Dyfi Foodbank.

“I’ve seen the statistic for the foodbank and the amount of food bags asked for in the first three months of this year are the same as the whole of last year. You need to have a referral to use the foodbank, from the nurse, or so on.

“I would say, and Clive would concur, people shouldn’t have to use the foodbanks and shame is their main emotion, that is awful.

“I have a bad feeling about this coming winter, and I think those not eligible for foodbank vouchers will be right on the edge.”

After the meeting, Cllr McCarten said the food group is currently working on its constitution, yet to confirm its name, an area of action and membership structure.

Cllr McCarten said spoke about Your Local Pantry, co-operation town models of community distribution and sale of surplus foods, as well as charity Hubbub. Cllr Rwth Hughes also pointed to Too Good To Go.

Cllr McCarten said they would have to find a building for the community pantry.

She added: “Trying to think of a way to present it as a environmental good rather than a need, because I think people are very sensitive. My other issue is that I need to reach out to members of the community who would not normally take part in a community food group situation.”

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