Finding your nearest food bank

If, as a result of a crisis, you are unable to feed yourself or your family, you may be able to get some emergency food from a food bank. In order to do so, you will need first to obtain a voucher from one of the food bank's authorised voucher holders once they have established that this is appropriate in your particular circumstances. If you do not already have contact with a voucher holder, then please get in touch with Cumbria County Council's community support team on 01228 221100.

There are food banks located in Carlisle, Penrith, Alston, Appleby, Barrow, MillomKendal, Windermere, Wigton, Workington, WhitehavenMaryport Egremont and Cockermouth.

Please remember that food banks are voluntary bodies - staffed entirely by volunteers - and all of their food is generously donated by members of the public. Their stocks of food are limited, so they cannot be a long term solution. Each voucher provides sufficient food for 3 days and it will not normally be possible for you to obtain more than 3 food vouchers. It is essential that you also seek ways of dealing with the cause(s) of your crisis if longer-term help is likely to be needed. Again, the community support team can advise you on this.

Love food hate waste

Food waste is a major issue. We throw away 7.2 million tonnes of food and drink from our homes every year, the majority of which could have been eaten. It's costing us £ 12bn a year and is bad for the environment too. There are lots of ways you can make the food that you have at home go that little bit further -  from sensible shopping and better storage to good portion control and getting creative with leftovers. For more information visit lovefoodhatewaste.com