Six families on average a week in the Kinallen, Dromara and Dromore areas are in need of emergency support according to a local community organisation.
And Andrew Dickson of the Kinallen Rural Community Association claims the findings are not shocking as more families are faciing poverty through no fault of their own.
A new foodbank donation point was launched recently in Kinallen organised through the Dromore charity Via Wings, the Kinallen Rural Community Development Association and Harry’s Country Store in Kinallen.
It was following last year’s Harvest Fest food donations to Via Wings that KRCDA saw the local need for support of families and individuals in need.
KRCDA’s Mr Dickson said rural deprivation and poverty had many faces many of which were unfortunately hidden.
“Finding out that Kinallen and the surrounding area was the second highest user group within the old Banbridge District Council area for emergency support, we, the KRCDA responded to this need in a practical manner, with the support of Via Wings and our local shop, Harry’s country Store, where Dennis and Anne Biggerstaff are kindly facilitating the local donation point,” said Mr Dickson.
Mr Dickson said the reason why he felt foodbanks were in huge demand was because families were struggling through no fault of their own.
“These families are not ones that find themselves in difficulty because they are trying to keep up with the Joneses, they don’t have someone suffering from addiction problems, or living in social housing or trying to milk the system these are families living in privately owned houses who are genuinely struggling who find themselves unable to cope with the cost of living.
“You would think somewhere where there is privately owned houses does not need a foodbank.
“There are families, some professional, who are working to try to make ends meet and have to depend on foodbanks through no fault of their own. It is a real eye-opener.
“Many are embarrassed to use foodbanks but they should not be.
“I know of one woman who would fast one day a week and lives on dried soup one day a week so she can feed her family.
“That is the reality of the problem. Problems families are facing could be a change in child tax credits, the rise in the cost of uniforms, childcare payments, unexpected bills, a rise in the mortgage rate.”
To donate to the foodbank simply purchase extra items in store and leave with staff.