A FOOD bank is Gosport has made a plea for help in finding a new home.
Fareham & Gosport Basics Bank can no longer use its site in David Bogue Hall, in Bury Road, Gosport.
Run by Gosport United Reformed Church, it now has to find a new base because the church is amalgamating with another congregation and the premises will no longer be available.
Phillip Rutt, a volunteer at the food bank, said: ‘In an ideal world, we would have somewhere that we would rent for free but if we had to rent, we would be prepared to do that.
‘We want to be accessible and have enough room and storage.
‘We also want to make clients welcome with a welcome and friendly atmosphere.
The food bank is hugely important in Gosport.Phillip Rutt
‘It would be nice to find somewhere first and then do something with it.
‘The food bank is looking for a space such as a small industrial unit or warehouse or a building with the use of three separate rooms.
‘Ideally, the new base would be in a central and accessible location so that those in need can still receive the essential services they provide.’
Phillip, who has helped out at food banks for seven years, added: ‘We’re grateful for our involvement with Bury Road URC and we have received generous support from the church.
‘Due to the growing need in Gosport, we are committed to finding new premises so that we can carry on doing what we always have done, supporting the vulnerable members of our community.
‘The food bank is hugely important in Gosport.
‘There is the story of one woman saying she came in crying with shame and left crying with happiness because of it.’
The food bank has dealt with over 2,000 referrals in Fareham and Gosport over the past 12 months.
It provides week’s worth of food, toiletries and nappies for people in crisis.
Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage has joined the campaign to help the food bank find a new premises, as has the borough council.
Ms Dinenage said: ‘Gosport Basics Bank does a fantastic job of helping people in our area who find themselves with nowhere else to turn.
‘It would be wonderful if we were able to help them in their quest to find a long-term base to continue their incredibly important work.
‘I am encouraging anyone who knows of a local premises that might be suitable to get in touch with the Basics Bank to see if it might meet their needs.’
Anyone who can help can call (023) 9252 3432.