A church has teamed up with Croydon Council and community partners to formally launch the borough’s next Food Stop that supports families struggling to make ends meet.
Launched today (Tuesday 22 October), St Francis’s Church in Monks Hill is the latest location to adopt the Community Connect / Food Stop model, a multi-agency approach which saves low-income families up to £700 a year on household bills, reduces their debts and boosts their job skills.
Each Food Stop offers around £15 to £20 worth of fresh food and other groceries for £3.50 a week to local residents struggling financially, especially those affected by welfare reforms or who are in debt. It also runs a jobs club and provides help from Croydon Council’s award-winning Gateway service with budgeting and skills training.
The Selsdon church’s new Food Stop is the second to formally launch in the borough after the New Addington pilot launched at Fieldway Family Centre in 2018, which has so far:
• Saved over £52,000 in residents’ combined shopping bills
• Prevented 54 rented households from becoming homeless through early intervention
• Helped over 40 people into work or training
• Supplied 5.3 tonnes of fresh discounted food, including fruit and vegetables, meat and dairy
The Monks Hill Food Stop in Tedder Road is one of two formally launching over the coming weeks, as another site at Parchmore Methodist Church in Thornton Heath will be unveiled in November.
“Rising prices and benefit cuts have burdened thousands of local low-income families, which is why the Food Stops we have created with community partners make such a difference.
“I am grateful to St Francis’s Church for working with us to launch in Selsdon, and with more Food Stops in the pipeline I look forward to us working with groups across the borough to boost the financial independence of even more Croydon people and make sure children do not go hungry.”
Councillor Alison Butler, deputy leader and cabinet member for homes and Gateway services
The Reverend Peter Wyatt, minister at St Francis’s church, Monks Hill, said: “The Monks Hill Food Stop is a fantastic opportunity for local people to get some quality food for a bargain price, and to reduce food waste at the same time. Many residents are looking forward to coming to the Food Stop.”
For more information on the St Francis’s Church Food Stop, visit their website.