New home for East Renfrewshire Foodbank

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East Renfrewshire’s foodbank has been granted permission for a licence to operate from underused council offices in Barrhead.

The three-year, rent-free licence was approved by city chiefs as the foodbank’s current home, the former St Andrews Parish Church, is to due to be redeveloped.

It approached the council seeking accommodation in Barrhead and ground floor offices on Lowndes Street were identified. Work East Ren, the council’s employability service, will move into the upper floor of the building.

“This will give a synergy of use and provide a one stop shop for clients,” a report to councillors said.

“This one stop approach will positively contribute to mitigating the causes of social exclusion and poverty, including child poverty and will enhance those employability and support services currently being delivered in the area and in particular the new poverty and social inclusion programme which is part financed by the European Social Fund and the council.

“The use of this property to provide a location for the East Renfrewshire foodbank will provide much needed assistance for families currently in food poverty, whilst re-purposing an underused building and co-locating appropriate services.”

East Renfrewshire foodbank, which is open two days per week, has been running for over five years under the umbrella organisation of the Trussell Trust. It helps around 45 families per week across the whole council area.

Councillors approved the plan which will see its director of environment in consultation with the chief officer (legal and procurement) to finalise negotiations with the foodbank.

The council will continue to cover the cost of maintenance of the property.