Food banks - are all of the people being helped truly deserving?

Just watched the BBC news and a report they did about the increasing need for food banks. Whilst I fully appreciate that many people really do need a leg up (especially low paidworkers not on benefits!) however 2 of the mothers being interviewed made me wonder just how desperate they were . Mother1 said that the food really helped her as you she could buy more presents for the kids - not a present for the kids but MORE presents. Mother 2 was a single unemployed mother of 4 but it struck me that as a black lady her hair was dyed bleach blond which surely must cost a lot to do and maintain? - I guess my point is that I think that it d be much more helpful to teach priorities to these 2 ladies! I know life wont be easy for these 2 but I was wondering how many other people in the que had similar priority blindness!

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In the country town where I live, we have no shortage of potential recipients of goods from the local food bank which has recently been set up.

Certainly plenty of vouchers have been distributed to the needy by the approved agencies.

However, according to a relative who volunteers in the Food Bank, no one has yet turned up to collect their issue.

It would seem that the perceived need is greater than the actual need.
They did say that at the food banks sponsored by Morrisions, recipients were referred there by their Doctor, social worker or their school. So that must weed out a few idle scroungers at least. But even when times are hard, people can manage to find a special offer or two, a money saving coupon here and there, the odd thing to swap and just about manange things like having their hair dyed for Christmas. Without having to dip into food money. So a snapshot view can make someone look like they are doing ok, when actually they are struggling.
I have to confess I have, in the past, taken advantage of buckshee scran dished out by the Sally Army in Plymouth when staggering back to the yard. I must have looked like a worthy recipient! Saved queuing for a kebab anyway.
I wish they could extend opening times for some of the scrounging sods though as it interferes with the opening hours of the pubs and when they have to collect their dole money and queue up to get their said above if they can afford sky TV, presents and other comforts then why the **** do they need handouts
I think the phrase "people who are struggling to maintain a lifestyle well above their paygrade" would be a more apt description.


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Table? Tea's on your lap in front of the 48" plasma tv, during a break from your x-box or smartphone game playing.

Have you seen the so-called 'definition of poverty' these days? I qualify, despite working in a well-paid job, because I don't have a games console, only have one tv and don't own various other what I would call luxury items.

I know there are some people in genuine hardship, but I think the points above about priorities are fundamental here.
Mmm... Come on kids! Tea's on the table. Dry pasta again.
It is possible to cook it in water. You could even purchase or grow a few vegetables to go in it. If you're feeling really extravagant, you could spend £3 and do beans on toast for 8 people.

Nice food costs money. If you want it, make money. If not, be thankful for what you can afford.

There's absolutely no shame in being skint and having to resort to things like dry pasta. There ought to be shame in scrounging for handouts while smoking and wearing designer shoes.

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Tbf if the benefit agency screw up or something expensive breaks a lot of people might be glad of a food bank parcel.
Theres generations being brought up by people who dont know how to cook.
Nice food costs money. If you want it, make money. If not, be thankful for what you can afford.
Not really.

As I've mentioned before on the benefits thread. My family get 3 meals out of a chicken, we have cheesy pasta and left overs once a week (which usualy does my lunch too) and tuna pasta bake (again does my lunch or two).

That gives me money for the odd splurge.

And I don't wear anything particularly designer... unless TU and George count.
I think the phrase "people who are struggling to maintain a lifestyle well above their paygrade" would be a more apt description.
That is exactely right. There was a program on last year about food handouts and some women had a nice house nice furniture big tv's , the lot . She explaned how her to dogs cost £16 a week to feed ! It seems to me to be something thats on the rise only because peolple see it as another thing they can get for free . The local paper [oxford] said last week they increased from 300 meals to 900 a week in one year . I really struggle to believe theres more than few people in Oxford who are so poor they need free food .


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I think some people lack the basis skills of eating healthy for not too much cash. You can make healthy meal with basic ingredients like pasta or rice - tinned mixed beans with meat or fish for a couple of quid if you plan it in advance snd think about things.

Me and my son love tinned sardines - they cost 80p a tin in morrisons throw on a jacket spud at £1 for 4 and a tin of mixed beans you a heathly Cooked meal for a few pounds.

When you're on a budget you can still eat well you just want to have to try too.
If you need to use a foodbank and you drink or smoke then you dont actually need to use a foodbank - its then a lifestyle choice to rely even more on people who contribute to society to bail you out of your own personal failure to cope with the real world.


Book Reviewer
The local paper [oxford] said last week they increased from 300 meals to 900 a week in one year . I really struggle to believe theres more than few people in Oxford who are so poor they need free food .

Students, the freeloading bastards!!
Well guys and girls, yet again I see an outpouring of sympathy on Arrse. Just so you know I was once like you, a young soldier impervious to pain, able to deflect bullets and leap buildings. That was many years ago, now after another career, I run a food bank and I think you miss the point of what they do.
We have a number of voucher holders, who can issue said vouchers to people in need of a food parcel (gift) these people are well placed, local police, school welfare officers, CAB, housing companies, assisted living organisations, church ministers, nurseries, children's centres. If any of these identify a family or individual in "food poverty" we can supply adult and child packs, balanced to last three days.
We will supply up to five in a year but we are there for crisis not support. People do not need to be destitute, but families are struggling to make ends meet. Many are working two or three shit jobs and still not covering basic bills. The food bank is there to alleviate one problem for a few days. Now clearly many of you soldiers nowadays are middle to upper class, with a private income and mummy to fall back on, so I don't expect you to understand and hope you never have to. But judging by the number of young ex services on my books some of you will. Just to show my true soldier credentials, if you don't like it **** off. Over 500 packs given out in 2012, and remember some working people are only one missed pay packet from disaster.
Oh and one other thing, there is no doubt that some are not deserving and play the system, but people are people they can deal with their own lack of morals.


Book Reviewer
As a single mum who hasn't always had it comfortable, I appreciate living hand to mouth snd month to month - I don't have to anymore ( due to bloody hard work and remembering what is actually important in life) but I have felt that hardship, pain snd feeling of basic failure of not bring able to support my son as a parent should always be able too.

However, that doesn't take away the fact that some people utilising food banks may not be as worthy or needy as others.

I've posted many times before how families in my not very well off area look down on some of the things I do with my son, like fruit picking to make crumbles for puddings and yet will go without food or the child will have just one free school meal a day but will arrive on a dress down day to school wearing designer clothes.

I'm sorry but I've yet to see more than a handful of genuinely down on their luck doing everything they can to turn it around families - call me a cynic if you like but I do find a lot if family worries snd woes are if their own making.
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