A foodbank gives boxes of nutritionally balanced food and support to people experiencing emotional or financial crisis. Overseen by the Trussell Trust, a charitable organisation, food banks work by volunteers collecting tinned and dried food from the public at supermarkets, and organising collections at schools, churches, community groups and local businesses. Vouchers are given to registered care professionals who distribute them to any of their clients who are in short term crisis and have no other means of buying food. The vouchers can then be exchanged for food parcels which are designed to last three days.
The UK’s first food bank was established by the Trussell Trust in 1999 and there are now projects across the UK. Ebbw Vale Food Bank was the first in Wales and was established in 2008. Following its success more centres have been opened . Food banks rely on volunteers and donations in order to ensure that the food is available to those in need.