Inclusivity

Funding level: £1,001 to £5,000

Description

The SCM Basics Bank project, run by Southampton City Mission (CIO), provides emergency food & clothes to those in need in Southampton. As well as providing food & clothes, volunteers at our 6 venues offer a non-judgemental, listening ear & opportunity to talk. We can signpost to further specialist help & local community groups which can help address longer term issues, overcome isolation & loneliness. We are absolutely clear that anyone referred to us, regardless of background, race, religion, sexual orientation or any other characteristic, should be able to receive help from us at their point of need. One of our clients that came to us recently wrote:

"Thank you all so much for helping my family today, you've made all the difference for us this bank holiday weekend. Everyone was kind and you gave us a great selection of food that the kids will eat 😊 keep up the great work"

In its first year (1996) SCM Basics Bank fed 839 people; so far in 2017 we have fed people 7,276 times and clothed 927. About 1/3 of those we currently help are children.

Demand for our services has risen this year which requires more food and more efficient storage and movement of food and clothes. We would like to ask for £2,500 to fund new storage and transit equipment: containers, cages, cupboards, racking, platform scales. All of these will help us to take good care of the generous food and clothing donations we receive, ensuring they are stored safely and reach service users in good condition.

All service users are referred to us by registered referral agents including social services, health professionals, churches and other agencies. Referral agents issue e-vouchers via our online referral system, or issue paper vouchers to people who they have identified are in genuine need. The service user can then visit one of our Basics Bank venues where we provide them with 5 days of food and up to 4 sets of clothing per family member.

We rely on churches, schools, local businesses and the general public for food and clothing donations. As well as working closely with referral agents we also partner with a number of local churches to host our SCM Basics Bank venues. We deliver our services from one of 6 venues on each week day, between 10am and 3pm.

We run a van which distributes food and clothing between the different venues and collects food and clothing donations from large donors. We rent a warehouse to give us the required space to sort & store all the food and clothing that is needed to help so many people. The project employs the equivalent of 2 full time members of staff and relies heavily on around 100 dedicated volunteers to deliver its services throughout the year.

Southampton City Mission (CIO)

Location: Southampton

SCM Basics Bank makes a positive difference to the lives of people facing hardship. Our wonderful volunteers give their time & skills freely to make life better for others, showing compassion & caring for all who come to us. It's a citywide project where we see so much generosity from so many!
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