Ayrshire East Foodbank is a Trussell Trust affiliated food bank managed by the Council for Voluntary Organisations (East Ayrshire) Ltd with eight distribution centres across the authority.
The food bank centres in Kilmarnock are based at Belford Mill, St Matthews Church and Onthank Community Centre.
There are further centres in St John’s Church in Cumnock, St Columba’s Church in Stewarton, Rankinston Community Centre and The Zone in Dalmellington along with a warehouse and distribution centre in Darvel. All of the distribution centres are manned by volunteers.
View the food bank centres and larders in East Ayrshire.
Support from food banks
For the past few years these centres have been supporting between 5,000 to 7,000 people each year.
Three days worth of meals are distributed at a time and pack sizes vary depending on the numbers in the family. All the food comes from donations from the public, especially churches, schools, local organisations, and businesses.
Donations are continually needed as over three tonnes of food is distributed every month.
Over ninety organisations from both the public and third sectors currently refer people to the foodbank. Any organisation working with people in need can register as a referrer.
Ayrshire East foodbank are also able to support people to maximise their benefits with the help of a specialist advisor seconded from the local authority.
How to donate
Donations can be handed in at Belford Mill from Monday to Friday between 9am and 4.30pm. Telephone: 01563 574000.
Find out more on the Council for Voluntary Organisations (East Ayrshire) website.
Further information about food banks
Across Scotland, more and more people are turning to food banks to help feed themselves and their families.
When you ask why this is happening, the answer is rather obvious - people are going to food banks because they don’t have enough money to afford necessities.
Over two-thirds of the 1,583,668 food parcels given out by Trussell Trust food banks last year were given out primarily due to problems with people receiving their benefits or because their benefits weren’t providing them with enough money to live on. It might seem like there isn’t much local communities can do about benefits, but really there are many things local services and individuals themselves, can do.
It is vital that anyone who requests a food parcel also understands what social security they are entitled to and knows where they can receive support to challenge unfair decisions or hurry sluggish bureaucracy. Referral services can help people find out what they are entitled to and support them to seek independent advice if, for example, it’s taking too long for money to come through or a decision feels wrong.
The local advice agency should be able to advise if someone is getting all the social security benefit they are to, can help challenge incorrect decisions, and provide support to hurry things up if they are taking too long. People can also ask for the support of their local MP, or file a complaint with the Department of Work and Pensions if things aren’t working as they should.