The Salvation Army in Fraserburgh has reported an increase in demand at their food bank over the festive period.
Major Caroline Buchanan, has been in charge of distributing emergency food aid from the charity’s church base on Frithside Street since May 2013.
She said: “There’s been a big increase in demand over the course of the year.
“We started recording visits this July in order to see how the problem of poverty was progressing. Since then, we’ve had 100 users”.
The Salvation Army takes what it calls a “holistic” approach to food aid, offering advice on budgeting and debt management as well as trying to discover the root of the users’ hardship.
Major Buchanan said: “Most of the people who come in are doing so because of benefit-related reasons - either sanctions or delays in their payments. Sometimes though it is just general hardship”.
She added that a number of users of the food bank are families with children, many of whom are worried about coping financially through the Christmas period.
With those families in mind, the Salvation Army has also organised the donation of toys and Christmas gifts.
Major Buchanan will be onsite over the holidays for anybody who needs emergency assistance. The food bank has been well supported by members of the community, who are encouraged to drop in food donations at the Frithside Street church.
Major Buchanan said: “A number of churches in Fraserburgh kindly donated their harvest produce to the food bank. The support from the wider community is greatly appreciated”.