APPEALS to help North Cotswold Foodbank at their busiest time of year are underway with more than 1,000 emergency food supplies given out in the last year.

The North Cotswold Foodbank say that summer months are amongst the most difficult of the year with children at home for six weeks.

This follows statistics from The Trussell Trust that say emergency food supplies are up 13 percent on the previous year. For the first time, new national data highlights the growing proportion of foodbank1referrals due to benefit levels not covering the costs of essentials, driving the increase in foodbank use overall.

North Cotswold Foodbank have handed out 1,315 three-day emergency food supplies.

Rhian Morgan, manager of North Cotswolds Foodbank said: "We are fast approaching one of our busiest times during the school summer holidays when schools will offer vouchers to those families where the children would normally be entitled to a free school meal.

"There is a huge financial impact on a family having to feed children who are at home for six weeks and we regularly come across parents who will go without food all day in order to feed their children.

"On Saturday June 16 we will be outside Tesco in Stow on the Wold collecting donations from customers to enable us to stock up our shelves ready for the peak in demand.

"Research from Trussell Trust figures show that there are stable low income trends with food insecurity giving rise to poor nutrition, and mental health issues. Your income is linked to your ability to save and budget.

"Here in rural Gloucestershire for those on low income a car is essential to get to work or the children to school so fixing a puncture in the tyre could be the difference between being able to eat or not.

"The support given to us by the public both with food donations and financial giving is testament to the awareness within the community of the struggle had by family and neighbours to make ends meet.

"Here at North Cotswold Foodbank, we are also still seeing a consistent flow of referrals, with 1,315 three-day emergency food supplies given to people in crisis in the last financial year."