The County You Live, Work And Play
Airdrie foodbank volunteers feed 2,500 people in one year
Basics Foodbank, who have a store on Cairnhill Road in Airdrie, have been doing selfless work in a number of communities for several years.
Volunteers have provided 2500 needy people with almost 25 tonnes of food and essentials over the last year.
In fact, the charity marks its fourth birthday this month.
Recently hundreds of people throughout Monklands have had to turn to foodbanks for daily essentials.
And since Basics – a Christian organisation – was formed back in 2010 they have been helping improve the lives of those most vulnerable.
Manager and founder David Shaw has been busy setting up stores across Lanarkshire with foodbanks in Motherwell, Bellshill and Wishaw subsequently opening.
The Airdrie store – which operates out of the Pilgrim Community Centre near the railway station – has been running on Tuesday and Thursday mornings since March 2012.
David, said: “We just want to help the people who are most in need by providing things that might seem ‘everyday’ to me and you but can be a real lifesaver to someone else.
“Along with food parcels which include things like pasta, tinned fish, custard and biscuits we also support people with items such as toilet rolls and soap.
“We also offer the gift of a gospel booklet to each customer too which we feel can really help.
“However it’s important to stress that we’re not just open to anybody popping in for goods when they like. You have to be referred by an agency such as Women’s Aid or Citizens Advice and this ensures that the people who need help the most are being served.”
He continued: “This year in particular we have been really inundated with items, which is great.
“It has been the busiest of our four years and we’ve noticed that on the back of the independence referendum, where foodbanks were a big issue, our stock has increased dramatically.
“We’ve had a brilliant response from all sorts of people – particularly local primary schools and churches so we would like to thank them.
“We would also like to thank Morrisons supermarket for providing us with another collection point in their store and Airdrie firm TOM van hire for donating a van to us.
“The van has been a godsend; it really does make such a difference and we find it much easier to collect and transport the goods now.”
And kind-spirited David is pleading for the people of Monklands to continue their generosity.
He added: “If anyone wants to donate they can pop in any time the store is open and do so.
“We will be in Airdrie between 10am and 12 noon but people can drop items into Morrisons at any time.
“Over the four stores we’ve been bringing in, on average, two tonnes of food each month but we have seen that increase recently.
“I knew when I started this charity four years ago there was a need for something like this locally, but even I’ve been surprised by just how badly needed it is.”