Food Bank's new mobile shop is on the road in Milton Keynes
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A food bank’s new mobile shop is on the road, thanks to funding from The Guinness Partnership housing association.
The van is run by MK Food Bank and stops at eight locations throughout the city, chosen because of their poor transport links and the need for the service.
Those who are struggling to pay for essentials costs like food, rent or electricity and gas are invited to use it..
People who live alone can buy up to 10 items for £2. Couples and families can buy 20 items for £4.
The shop stocks long-life store cupboard items and cooking ingredients, as well as some toiletries, cleaning products and treats. The van has a fold-out canopy allowing the service to be used throughout the year whatever the weather.
Alistair Smyth, the Guinness Partnership’s Director of External Affairs and Social Investment, said: “With inflation continuing to rise, the increased cost of living is causing real hardship.
“When we heard about the plans for a mobile top-up shop, we were really keen to provide funding to ensure it could happen to help alleviate the suffering this crisis is having in the communities we serve.”
MK Food Bank supports more than 5,000 families a year.
Their operations manager Louisa Hobbs, said: “The top-up shop is already proving to be a lifeline for many people.
“As the cost of living continues to rise, and particularly as the cold weather draws in, so many individuals and families are struggling to afford essentials.
“The security of the mobile top-up shop means that they can budget more easily to cover rent and bills, and having the van come nearer to them means they don’t have to reach into already-stretched budgets for bus or taxi fares.
“The shop provides people with the dignity of being able to choose what they want to buy and contribute towards it. It offers a sense of independence which receiving emergency parcels does not.”