With families across Bucks struggling to feed themselves during the summer holidays, the Bucks Free Press has today launched a campaign to support a vital foodbank in High Wycombe.

One Can Trust, which provides food parcels for families in desperate need, has seen a 50 per cent increase in the number of people needing help every month compared to last year.

Following the revelation in last week’s paper that Wycombe District Council has spent around £30,000 on snacks and refreshments for their councillors while One Can Trust urgently appeals for more donations over the summer holidays, the Bucks Free Press is calling on kind-hearted readers to help hungry families.

To kick-start the campaign, staff at the Bucks Free Press collected a trolley-full of food to donate to the charity's main foodbank centre on Duke Street.

Andrew Colley and Stephanie Wareham from the Free Press editorial team visited the centre on Duke Street on Wednesday to deliver the food and meet with One Can trustee, Heather Stanley, to find out the extent of the problem facing the community.

In the charity’s main warehouse, lines of shelves, where donated food from members of the public would be sorted and packed into parcels by some of their 100 volunteers, stand empty.

“A few months ago we had food everywhere, it was covering the floor and the shelves,” said Heather.

“But sadly demand has gone up, whereas donations haven’t. Donations are still coming in but they’re going out again just as quickly at the moment. It is a struggle.”

Since the charity started monitoring their statistics in 2011, they have given away around 14,000 food parcels and served 27,450 people – including 11,450 children, up until the end of July this year.

In March, they experienced their busiest month ever – giving away 401 food parcels.

The charity has also seen the number of people needing food parcels this year increase by 50 per cent compared to 2016 – with an average of 448 people being served a month in 2016 compared to 664 in 2017.

The number of children needing help has also increased by 60 per cent in the same period – from 196 per month to 319.

Heather said: “We are feeding thousands and thousands of people every year. There is so much need and the need is growing, even in an affluent area like Bucks. There is hidden poverty everywhere – we give out food parcels in Marlow and Beaconsfield.

“We see people from all walks of life. We had one family here who were coping hand to mouth every month, but a blown tyre saw them having to pay out £50 to repair it. That would have been money for the weekly shop, but the car is needed for getting to work – what do they do?

“We really look forward to the day that we don’t need to do this anymore, but until then, the support we receive is vital. We need more food donations but also money, because it costs us around £7.50 per parcel to send out.”

The food parcels given out are worth around £65 for a family, £36 for a single parent and £21 for an adult per week. And unlike other foodbanks, One Can Trust provides enough food for three meals a day, plus snacks, for a week.

The charity also relies on supermarkets for help, with Sainsbury’s in Beaconsfield donating leftover fresh bread, which the volunteers store in a freezer paid for by a charity grant.

A number of supermarkets also have “shop and drop” facilities, where shoppers can buy extra food for the foodbank and leave it at the store in a trolley for the foodbank.

Speaking about the launch of the new summer campaign, Heather added: “It is amazing, we are so grateful for the support we have had from everyone.”  

Where you can donate to help feed families in desperate need: 

Shop and Drop: 

  • Tesco, Eden Centre, High Wycombe
  • Sainsbury's, Oxford Road, High Wycombe
  • Waitrose, Handy Cross, High Wycombe
  • Morrisons, Temple End, High Wycombe
  • Asda, Holmers Farm Way, High Wycombe
  • Waitrose, Chapel Street, Marlow
  • Waitrose, Penn Road, Beaconsfield 
  • Sainsbury's, Maxwell Road, Beaconsfield
  • Co-op, Rose Avenue, Hazlemere
  • Co-op, Cosy Corner Parade, Hazlemere
  • Tesco, Longwick Road, Princes Risborough

Large Donations: 

  • Pre-arranged drop off only at their main store - 11B Duke Street, High Wycombe - email onecan@live.co.uk and the admin team will arrange a time for you to be met by a member of the team. 

Smaller Donations: 

  • The Hub, Union Baptist, Easton Street, High Wycombe - Mon to Fri, 9am to 5pm
  • Wesley Methodist Church, Priory Road, High Wycombe - Tues 2pm to 4pm, Fri 3pm to 5pm, Sat 10am to 12pm
  • Kings Centre, Desborough Road, High Wycombe 
  • All Saints Church, High Wycombe 
  • Children's Centre, Hampden Way, High Wycombe
  • St Andrews Church, Hatters Lane. High Wycombe
  • St Annes and St Peters Church, Micklefield Road, High Wycombe
  • Christ the Servant King, Booker
  • Little Marlow Church, Coldmoorholm Lane, Little Marlow
  • All Saints Church, Marlow
  • Marlow Methodist Church, Spittal Street, Marlow
  • Marlow Christian Fellowship, Foxes Piece School, Newfield Road, Marlow
  • Stokenchurch Methodist Church, St Hughs Close, Stokenchurch
  • St Michael's and All Angels, St Micheal's Green, Beaconsfield
  • Speen Baptist Church, Chapel Hill, Speen
  • St Michael and All Angel's Church, off Valley Road, Hughenden