City of Wolverhampton Council is set to extend its support to the city’s foodbanks for another year.

The council has been delivering vital supplies to a network of foodbanks across the city since the start of the pandemic and has so far delivered 850,000 meals. 

A meeting of the council’s cabinet resources panel will next week be asked to agree to provide £450,000 to extend this support for a further 12 months. 

Foodbanks have been hit hard by the pandemic with many of their volunteers being required to shield and fewer donations at a time when demand for help from people in financial crisis has risen.  

Leader of City of Wolverhampton Council, Cllr Ian Brookfield, said: “Our approach is simple - we look after our own and no-one gets left behind. The pandemic has made life really difficult for our city’s network of foodbanks who provide vital help for people in financial crisis.  

“Demand for this help has gone up as more people are struggling financially, but the donations the foodbanks rely on to keep going have dropped and many of their volunteers are older people who have needed to shield. 

“This is why, early in the pandemic, we took a decision to directly support Wolverhampton foodbanks by providing them with weekly supplies. We have continued to do that ever since and because we know that the economic effects of the pandemic will go on, we are set to continue with that support for another 12 months. 

“I am hugely proud of the way our council has ensured people have been able to put food on the table during this pandemic, whether it be through the 1.3 million meals were delivered to people who were shielding during the first lockdown, the 850,000 meals we’ve sent to foodbanks or support for families who couldn’t afford to feed their kids over the school holidays.” 

One of the foodbanks to benefit from the council’s support is based at the Excel Church in Bilston. 

Councillor Beverley Momenabadi, who regularly volunteers at the Excel foodbank, said: “The Excel Church Food Bank opened a year ago. It initially opened in response to the pandemic, but it has uncovered a huge ongoing need in the area. 

“The ongoing support from the city council will be a great assistance to foodbanks like ours who rely on donations and the efforts of volunteers to keep supporting people in need.” 

Every food parcel delivered to the foodbanks contains enough basic supplies to feed a person for a week. A typical parcel will contain: cereal, bread, soup, pasta, rice, tinned tomatoes/pasta sauce, a tinned vegetarian meal, baked beans, tinned vegetables, tinned fruit. Tea/coffee, biscuits and UHT milk.