A FOOD bank which is heavily relied upon by the community has collected a valuable donation of its own.

With help from The Argus, energy firm BP has distributed a community fund of £6,000 to projects across Sussex in need of a cash boost – and organisations like the Portslade Food Bank are now benefiting.

The food bank was chosen as one of the beneficiaries of BP’s ‘Green Lights All The Way’ campaign after volunteers told how kitchen equipment used to feed families was not suitable for large-scale catering.

Volunteers provide those in need with seven days’ worth of food for their families. They have also been providing menu ideas for people to learn how to cook healthy meals – all with inadequate equipment.

But now, after receiving part of the £6,000 pot, approximately 35 families who use the food bank each day are now benefiting from bigger portions and a wider selection of food.

Jackie O’Rourke, of Portslade Food Bank, said: “I’m really proud of what we do here, what we’ve achieved and the prize we’ve won. We’ve been running for over a year now and we know from past experience that as the winter draws in more and more families in Portslade will use our service. This new equipment will play a vital role in helping us to feed these families.

“The new products will allow us to make much larger portions so that not only can we offer more than one portion, but the families can take some home with them to re-heat for their families or to ensure they have a hot meal the following day. We are so grateful for the new kitchen equipment.”

Tea, coffee and homemade cakes are always on offer at the food bank and volunteers strive to not only feed those in need, but educate them on how to save money on their bills.

For this reason, BP judged the organisation as a worthy recipient of its Green Lights All The Way campaign fund.

Brad Johnson, from BP, said: “Congratulations to Portslade Food Bank, a very deserving winner. It was humbling to see how the new kitchen equipment will be used and how it will be used to serve those members of the Portslade community who are in need and we hope it continues to do so for many years to come.”