Issue - meetings

Annual Review of Community Pantries

Meeting: 13/09/2023 - Resources and Fire & Rescue Overview and Scrutiny Committee (Item 8)

8 Annual Review of Community Pantries pdf icon PDF 215 KB

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The item was introduced by Louise Richards (Partnerships Projects Co-Ordinator). She told members the report looked at the first 12 months of operation of the community pantries after they were commissioned by the Feed the Hungry initiative. Three pantries were set up, with a £5 membership fee. Each of them were now operating waiting lists as the demand for their use was so big. Pantry members with more complex issues would be signposted to other agencies who would be able to assist them. Members’ attention was drawn to the case study examples included in the report, which demonstrated the positive impact the community pantries had had. Louise Richards said it had been agreed to extend the funding for the programme for a further 12 months. There was then a three-year transitional plan to transfer the pantries into community ownership.


Councillor Sarah Boad said one of the community pantries was in her ward. She said the staff did an amazing job and would go the extra mile for residents. She accepted it cost a lot of money to operate the pantries, but hoped that funding could be found so they could continue. It was noted that a user had been excluded for abusing staff. Councillor Sarah Boad said some users had severe mental health issues.


Responding to a point raised by Councillor Tim Sinclair, Louise Richards said Feed the Hungry typically purchased the bulk of their food from FareShare. However depending on what was delivered that week, staff may have to top up and purchase certain fresh foods from supermarkets. She said Feed the Hungry had service level agreements for similar projects in Leicestershire and Coventry and were looking for similar deals in Warwickshire.


Members suggested the scheme could be extended, perhaps in Rugby and in Bedworth.


Members noted the contents of the report.