Extra pressure put on the city’s foodbanks over the school holidays has left them at breaking point as they have handed out more supplies than they have been getting in.
The numbers of cases that have attended foodbanks in the last six weeks have increased, and in particular they have been families with children.
The increase has co-incided with school holidays and parents, who would normally rely on free or subsidised meals at school for their children, having to find three extra meals a day.
The Yorkshire Evening Post’s Feed A Family Campaign, which started as schools broke up for the summer, predicted that 4500 children would go hungry this summer had it not been for foodbanks and early indications show that this figure could even have risen.
At the Leeds South foodbank alone, which is based at Lincoln Green it has handed out 114 more food parcels between July 22 and September 5 this year, compared to the same period for 2016.
Wendy Doyle, manager, said she was shocked by the increase and was relying on donations over the next few weeks to replenish stocks.
She said: “It has shocked me that it has gone up and that this situation is still going. It has been extremely busy with families and larger families where people and children have had to move back in with their parents.
“The problem is that we have not as much coming in as we have going out. For the last couple of weeks we have sent out two tonnes of food a week but are only getting a ton a week coming in.
“Harvest festivals are coming up and people are always really generous, and the schools have gone back so we are hoping we can replenish what we have run short on.”