Surviving and Thriving
The Isle of Man Foodbank during Covid-19.
Everyone on Island has had to adapt and change behaviour over the last 10 weeks to survive the impact of Covid-19 and, as we begin to exit this stage of the pandemic, many of us are trying to envisage how the New Normal might look. So too is the Foodbank.
Prior to lockdown, the Foodbank, now in it’s 8th year and providing support to those in crisis across the Island, was providing IRO 150 food parcels per week to individuals, couples and families. The introduction of lockdown saw our output increase by 33% with almost 200 parcels per week.
Over this period we effectively went ‘contactless’ interviewing clients by phone and introducing possibly the first ‘drive through’ Foodbank in the British Isles.
We have always been well supported by the great Manx public, businesses, organisations and faith groups. However, as people isolated, shopping became more challenging, food was limited and cash was shunned in preference to credit cards our food donations began to dry up but support began to change to financial donations which we really appreciate and value. This has allowed us to continue to meet food demands uninterrupted. We now buy in local meat from Manx Meats, have it processed & blast frozen by the prison and delivered by our numerous new found volunteers.
Fortunately none of our teams across the Island have suffered from the virus though many have had to self isolate. We have met the needs of our clients, learned a lot, and are enthused with our ideas for the future and are determined to continue making a difference to the lives of those we support.
Neal Mellon. CEO