Presbyterian Support Otago Family Works co-ordinator Debbie
Booth packs a parcel from the organisation's food bank
shelves yesterday. Photo by Craig Baxter.
Demand for food packages at the Presbyterian Support
Otago food bank in Dunedin has increased 22% on the previous
financial year, chief executive Gillian Bremner says.
Mrs Bremner said the rising demand in the year to the end of
June was from a new group of people seeking support in
''There is an increased demand for support from an emerging
group of people who've been made redundant, or are unable to
get casual or fixed-term employment and are struggling to
make ends meet.''
These people had been employed before and were now struggling
to readjust their budgets, she said.
''[There is] a growing trend of people who need support, who
have never needed assistance previously.''
They needed food parcels as they adjusted to their new
circumstances, she said.
It was too soon for statistics to reveal if welfare system
changes had also created more demand for food parcels but she
speculated it had.
''I suspect that's the case ... but it's not a flood [of
people] to the door at this point.''
A wide range of people used the food bank in Dunedin, she
''A reasonable number of young people, a range of older
people and all else in between.''