Dublin’s Archbishop Diarmuid Martin is appealing to parishioners to donate food to assist those most in need throughout the Diocese this Christmas.
The launch took place today (11.30 Monday December 1st) in Crosscare’s first food bank on Dublin’s Portland Row.
The appeal is necessary again this winter to provide essential food and household products to many Dublin families struggling to cope. The first ever Diocesan food appeal was made this time last year. Demand for basic food items has increased so much in 2014 that another significant effort is needed to keep the food banks adequately stocked.
Archbishop Martin launched the appeal in all parishes following a request from Crosscare for basic items for families. In the past 12 months Crosscare has had to set up four new food banks along the East coast.
With just weeks left, at the current rate of distribution, Crosscare expects distribute over 1,200 tonnes of food by the end of the year. The figure for 2013 was 750 tonnes.
Michael McDonagh, Crosscare Senior Manager for Food Services said: “Last year’s appeal raised enough food to last months; we gave out several thousand hampers containing basic items that would make up a weekly shop for a family”. However, Mr. Mc Donagh said that despite the extraordinarily generous response from the public in December 2013, demand is still increasing and they are finding it hard to keep up.
Crosscare supplies food directly to those who need it and also to 70 other charities working to help people who are marginalised, excluded or living in poverty.
In response to this need, Archbishop Martin said he was asking all Dublin parishes to help collect food for the food bank over the first week of December. Parishioners will be able to bring food supplies to their local parish at weekend Mass times on the 6th and 7th of December. Crosscare will collect and redistribute the food to those most in need.
Types of food urgently needed include pasta/rice, fruit juice, tea/coffee, soup, sugar, powdered milk, tinned meat/fish, tinned veg/fruit, packaged dessert, biscuits, and hygiene products. ENDS
* Parishes should contact Valerie Cummins at the Portland Row Food Bank as soon as possible to arrange prompt collection of food items. 01-8365040 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org