‘We only give to the most needy’

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A Blackpool food bank has hit back at claims made in a national newspaper that people “take advantage” of them.

His Provision, a food bank located in the Life Centre on Raikes Parade gives food parcels to up to dozens of people each week but said none of them could be considered to be abusing the system.

The Mail on Sunday reported this weekend that it had found the country’s largest food bank organisation, The Trussell Trust, do “inadequate checks” on those seeking help and for some users to be “taking advantage”.

But this claim has been refuted by Fylde food banks which say in many cases they have to seek out those in need as many are too proud to ask for help and that checks are always carried out to ensure food goes to the most needy.

His Provision project co-ordinator Chris Phillips said: “We don’t give out food parcels willy nilly, we accept people if they’re signposted to us.

“We do get people who just turn up so we ask them to volunteer in return for a food parcel.”

The charity said it gives out between 40 and 60 food parcels each week, with around one third of those going to families and the average food parcel worth around £7.

Mrs Phillips added: “Generally people are very upset when they come to us for help. It means an awful lot to them to know there’s somewhere they can turn to.

“There are always some who will try to push the system but these people making these claims should hear real users stories - people are in need.”