Thirty very worthy projects have been funded by East Devon District Council’s Coronavirus Community Food Fund, giving out a total of over £45,000. This fund provides grants for any projects related to providing food to residents of East Devon who are in food poverty during the Coronavirus situation.

Broadclyst Parish Council has received nearly £3,000 from the Coronavirus Community Food Fund. This has allowed the purchase of additional items to support Exeter Food Bank’s work, whilst Exeter Food Bank is under unprecedented demand and households needed additional items to those supplied by the Food Bank.

To find out more and apply to the Coronavirus Community Food Fund: https://eastdevon.gov.uk/coronavirus-covid-19/community-support/coronavirus-community-food-fund/

Since April 2020 the Broadclyst satellite hub of the Exeter Food Bank has supported over 80 households throughout the pandemic.

The money from East Devon District Council’s Coronavirus Community Food Fund has been used to:

• Purchase basic essential items to supplement the emergency food parcels such as nappies, wet wipes, general cleaning, kitchen and laundry products
• Pay for mileage for volunteers who have been delivering the parcels to local residents.

The Parish Council itself has funded staff time and mileage, the hire and equipment of a portacabin to use as a food bank and continues to fund its operational costs.

Broadclyst Parish Council Chair Cllr Henry Massey said

with a parish covering over 25 square miles, many of our households do not have good access to the public transport network and the cost of keeping a vehicle on the road caused an unsustainable additional strain on reduced household budgets. We recognised that there was a danger that people would not be able to access vital supplies if they had to travel to Exeter to pick up food parcels, so we are very grateful to EDDC for helping us to fund mileage costs for our network of community volunteers who have delivered vital supplies to doorsteps for the last year.”

Food Bank Manager and Council Clerk Angie Hurren explains that the Broadclyst satellite hub of the Exeter Food Bank will continue while there is local need and has expanded its operation to distribute short date food from retail outlets.

Having built working relationships with local shops and supermarkets, we are looking at increasing the area we cover by working with neighbouring councils and community organisations. The redistribution of short date food can address food poverty while minimising food waste, freeing-up some money in over-stretched household budgets.” To contact the Council for help, call 01392 360269 or email support@broadclyst.org

Councillor Marianne Rixson, East Devon District Council’s portfolio holder with responsibility for Coronavirus response and recovery said:

We are very pleased to have facilitated projects by working with community groups across the district.

We would like to thank everyone involved by providing food and other essential items where residents have been in dire need. These have proved absolutely vital during the pandemic, the statements made by Broadclyst Parish Council and Exeter Food Bank highlight the broad range of help that has been required and provided.”