HARTLEPOOL’S Foodbank has been shortlisted for a funding grant it plans to use to help people struggling with debt.
The charity which provides emergency food parcels to hundreds of individuals and families a year is in the running to receive a grant up to £3,000.
They are one of four community groups in the North-East through to the public vote for funding from the Lloyds Bank Community Fund.
The foodbank, backed by the Mail’s ‘If You Can We Can’ campaign, says it wants to expand the help it can offer people who come to them for help. And volunteers say debt is one of the biggest issues linked to clients being referred to the foodbank.
Al Wales, co-ordinator of Hartlepool Foodbank, said: “It is great to be able to give food and help with that initial crisis period but we would like to develop the support we are able to give.
“It is fairly early days but we are looking to develop debt support as it is one of the number one issues facing people we see. We are thrilled that we have been shortlisted in the final four for our area, it is fabulous in itself as we are guaranteed some money which is wonderful.”
Over 7,000 community groups nationwide were nominated for the funding.
A total of 1,400 causes in 350 communities have been shortlisted and four local causes in every area will be awarded funding ranging from £3,000 to £500, depending on the results of a public vote.
The foodbank, based in Church Street, was also boosted when it collected 767kg of food donations at Hartlepool’s Asda supermarket on Saturday.
Al added: “We can give away up to half a tonne of food a week so these collections are absolutely essential.”
l To vote for Hartlepool Foodbank go to the www.communityfund.lloydsbank.com. The closing date is Friday, October 10.
l Mail view: Page 8