If you and your family are going hungry and you need help getting food, you can visit a local foodbank in a crisis.
Using a food bank
Food banks are community organisations that can help if you can’t afford the food you need.
You can find information about local food banks and support on the Lambeth Larder website and through the Family Information Directory
If a food bank is run by a church or other religious group they'll still help you if you're not religious or from a different religion.
You may need to get a referral to a food bank before you can use it. You can get a referral for yourself and any family members you live with, including your partner.
You can contact your local food bank to see if you need a referral.
There a number of different agencies who can refer you to foodbanks including:
- advice agencies
- your local Job Centre
- your GP
- housing associations
- social workers.
They'll usually make an appointment for you to discuss your situation with someone first to check you’re eligible for the food bank. If you’re eligible, they’ll give you a voucher for your nearest food bank.
Going to a food bank
When an organisation refers you to a food bank they’ll give you a voucher and tell you where the food bank is.
Check if the voucher is only valid on a specific day, you can ask the person who refers you.
The food bank will give you a food parcel. Your parcel will usually contain enough food for 3 days. The food bank might also be able to give you essential toiletries, like toothpaste or deodorant.
When you visit the food bank, let them know if you have any allergies or dietary requirements.
The food bank might be able to deliver your food parcel if you’re sick or disabled and can’t travel. Contact them to check if they can deliver.
If you need to use the food bank again
Some food banks have a limit on the number of times you can visit, but it's still worth asking if you really need the food.
If you're in this situation you may want to seek advice from one of Lambeth's advice agencies to discuss the best way to help you. Even if they can't refer you again, they can give you advice on debt or benefits if you need it.
Our Cost of living page has information that may be helpful if you are currently struggling.