By Brian Talbot, Minister at Broughty Ferry BC
On Sunday 22 March I was contacted by the proprietor of one of the local pubs to see if our church wished to be a partner with six of the local licensed trade proprietors in setting up a food bank in our area of Dundee. The deacons quickly and unanimously agreed to support this venture. We work in partnership with more than 20 other food banks in Dundee committed to ensuring everyone in the city has the necessary food to eat. Two weeks of preparation led to a launch on Friday 3 April.
We have team members who run the website or engage in fund raising or contacting local businesses to get involved with the work; others who in the early days overcame some real challenges to purchase in bulk scarce food supplies in order to get a sufficient range of goods to offer a balanced food parcel to recipients. I have responsibility for overseeing the volunteers’ team comprising of a packing team operating two days a week; our delivery team, likewise two days a week, with emergency parcels in between as required, together with others who stock check or make follow-up phone calls to parcel recipients.
Around 40 people play a part in providing food parcels for eighty to one hundred people per week. We also provide supplies for another three people providing hot food for up to 20 older people per week in a separate initiative in our community. It is brilliant how so many people want to be good neighbours in our community and I am thankful to God that we have been invited as a church to be a part of that important work. It has led to some great conversations about faith and prayer and in working alongside people with whom I had never spent time before provided opportunities to reflect on what really matters in life.