While there are several food distribution points in Bedfordshire, most of the aid is provided by two main not-for-profit organisations. They include the Trussell Trust and its several partners as well as the Food Aid Network, or FAN. Between these two groups they assist hundreds of vulnerable individuals and families on a low income each year, and more information on their services is below.
How the centers operate is that volunteers, churches, and a number of other community groups collect food from restaurants and grocery stores in Bedfordshire. They then pack the items into parcels, which are then provided to individuals with a voucher. The boxes may have tea, canned fruits, rice, soup, and other healthy items. There are even special services provided, such as the Christmas in a Box programme from Food Aid Network and they also provide a Meals on Wheels service. Read more on Meals on Wheels schemes.
When a person from the Bedfordshire has a voucher, which can often be obtained from a council, they can stop by a foodbank for an emergency parcel. In general, they will be provided up to three days of food per member of the household. Or they can ofen refer clients to other schemes as part of their signposting services.
BFAN, or the Bedfordshire Food Aid Network, has two centres in the community. They are at Shortmead Industrial Estate, Sun Street Biggleswade SG18 0BP as well as another location at Eastern Avenue Industrial Estate, Luton Road, Dunstable LU5 4JY.
It is a group of local providers that are sharing resources to help the vulnerable. The charities as well as churches work together to collect groceries and food and then provide the goods to the needy. The not-for-profit organisation will only provide food in an emergency, and this is not a welfare type, ongoing solution. The telephone is
0844 99 343 99.
Food in Central Bedfordshire may be available from the welfare crisis scheme. Residents on a low income that are under exceptional pressure can receive help from the council, and this may include groceries, a voucher to a food bank in Bedfordshire, or other types of practical support. Read Central Bedfordshire welfare schemes and grants.
New Opportunities and Horizons – The drop in centre can provide a hot meal or food to clients that drop in. A number of services are provided by this organisation, ranging from help in applying for government benefits to the charity shop on High Town Road. Hundreds of people from Bedfordshire use the food and other NOAH Enterprise welfare centre services each year.
Town of Luton is supported by the crisis support scheme. In an emergency, residents on benefits and a low income can receive a voucher for food. This scheme is very limited in resources, and it is in effect the welfare programme for the region. It can offer assistance as a last resort to only residents of the town. Find more details on crisis support in Luton.
A foodbank is also run by the Vineyard Church, in Potton as well as Brickhill Church, Centre Brickhill Drive, Bedford, MK41 7QF. Call them at 01234 268569 for more information.
Maybe the leading organisation to call upon for assistance is the Trussell Trust. They help operate several distribution points in the community, as noted below. However the main office is at New Life Church, 80a Houghton Road, Dunstable Bedfordshire, LU5 5AD. Cal them at 07874 200056.
The locations of the Trussell Trust distribution points are below. Clients will need to have a voucher in order to use the centres, and they can get them from a care worker, CAB, or many charities in Bedfordshire such as the Salvation Army provide them. The locations are below, or call 1234 268569 in an emergency.
- All Nations Church, Brickhill Drive, and this location is open on Monday PM.
- Christ Church post is 117 Denmark Street, Bedford.
- On Wednesday, people can stop by St Mary’s Church, Church Lane, Goldington, Bedford MK41 or they can drop in at the food bank at Scott Hall, Barford Avenue, Bedford MK42 0DS.
- The Bedford Salvation Army provides emergency food on Thursdays, and they partner with the Trussell Trust too. Signposting is also offered from key workers, often over a cup of tea or served with a free hot meal. The charity also has a cafe for hot meals, including at Christmas. Locate the Salvation Army programmes in Luton.
- Project 229 is a centre at 229 Bedford Road, Kempston, MK42 8DA. Volunteers pass out food parcels on Friday: 1:00 to 3:00pm.
Another option is the Bedford food bank. This centre is funded by donations from Luton Community Foundation as well as Park Woodfine Heald Mellows solicitors. They also operate a van which can distribute items in the county.
This location and its volunteers collect items from local Supermarkets or food drives, and they may have tinned meats or even fresh fruits. Volunteers pack the boxes and give them to the low income from the community with a voucher. Many of the clients have had their benefits cut, and are seeking assistance in feeding their families.
Council support, including welfare and crisis grants, can be used in by residents for acquiring food. The vulnerable and low income in the Bedford Borough can apply for a voucher when they have no other options available to them, and the welfare scheme provides food, clothing, and other support. More on Bedford Council Local Welfare emergency scheme.