A LEADING charity is to continue emergency food deliveries direct to residents most in need instead of asking them to attend their foodbank.

West Dunbartonshire Community Foodshare (WDCF) has announced it will continue with home delivery for the next year.

The charity reviewed their services last month in the face of an 84 per cent rise in people needing support in the past year of Covid-19 - more than 27,500 people.

Their weekly drop-in services closed last March when the pandemic struck. But WDCF said they had never been comfortable with residents having to queue or carry heavy bags significant distances.

Clair Coyle, charity manager, told the Post: “This last year has really made us think about how we support people. We continually review our services to ensure we are providing support in the most dignified way possible, but seeing people in lengthy queues outside our distribution centres, sometimes in very poor weather, is something we have never been comfortable with. Until now, we had no way of resolving this.

“We consulted with people we have been supporting recently and everyone told us they prefer home delivery. Many people also said that if the distribution centres re-opened, they would be too embarrassed to attend.

“Home delivery helps to lessen the stigma attached to food insecurity.”

Most residents who attended their drop-ins had no money for bus fares and struggled to get home with their supplies. Mothers with young children also found it difficult, along with the elderly, disabled and those with mental health issues.

Ms Coyle said: “Sometimes the people at the end of the queue would find that there was little or no choice of food by the time they got in. With home delivery every single person gets the same share of food which includes fresh and frozen items as well as fresh fruit and vegetables.

“The pandemic has given us the chance to see how working in a completely different way could make a difference, and it has been extremely successful.”

Anyone facing food insecurity or needing support can call the charity on 01389 764135, Tuesday to Friday, 10am to 3pm. Deliveries are made the next working day and in a discreet manner, said WDCF.

As well as food, WDCF also provides a BabyBank, School Uniform Bank, school holiday brunch bags and Christmas Toybank.

WDCF thanked the public for their food and financial support but there is an urgent need for more donations. Food can be donated at Sainsbury’s in Drumchapel, Asda in Clydebank, Lidl in Yoker or the Golden Jubilee Hospital. Money donation boxes are in Keystores in Kilbowie Road, Hardgate, Faifley and Parkhall.