On 24th April 2018, Neal Mellon gave a talk to the club about the Isle of Man Foodbank. In connection with this, Club members generously made donations of items.
The Isle of Man Foodbank is a Manx registered independent charity, founded in November 2013, evolving from a project originally instigated by a group of Rotarians from Douglas in the Isle of Man. Since then demand for help or support has increased year on year.
In making the donation, Paul Winnell, President of the Rotary Club of Rushen & Western Mann commented:
"The members of the club have genrously donated food and toiletries as they recognise that the Isle of Man Foodbank provides crisis support in the form of REAL food for REAL people in REAL need, supporting people of all ages, in all areas of the island"
In accepting the donations, Neal Mellon commented:
"Times are hard. Many people are JUST ABOUT MANAGING - so when a sudden crisis occurs such as redundancy, illness, a domestic situation or something else outside the individuals control, suddenly it all goes pear-shaped.
That's why Foodbank exists -
- to provide emergency food support to those in crisis,
- to give a hand up and
- to help with getting back on track."
"We provide emergency support with food paracles, while helping clients to identify and resolve underlying problems by pointing clients to relevant support organisations such as Debt Management, Life Skills, Careers and Budgeting."
Neal Mellon went on to outline that the Isle of Man Foodbank also have a number of other projects on the go - here is just a flavour of the other things they do:
- Providing a conduit to minimise food waste by working with supermarkets and food retailers. This has expanded to include chilled and frozen goods where the chill chain can be tracked and audited.
- Working with Probation to build skills and help people to get back on their feet.
- Working with the police to enable them to provide food parcels in emergency.
- Basic skills cookery training / provision of slow cookers
- Foodbank allotment - to grow fresh produce and provide training opportunities for students on UCM horticulture courses.
- Supporting breakfast club initiatives in primary school.
- Distribution and storage hubs based in Port Erin and Ramsey serving outlying areas.