a baby bank seems a gloriously simple idea. There are many things which are needed, or useful, with a new baby or young child.
Having a baby is an expensive business and those who think baby banks are just a way to give handouts to people who should have thought more carefully about whether or not they could afford the child, should look a little more carefully at what baby banks do and why. Child poverty is not a new thing for starters. And, as the baby bank staff themselves point out, many using their services are working parents who find an unexpected bill can leave them with too much month at the end of the money and stark choices having to be made.
Proof that many families need a helping hand was also borne out this week in a statement by anti-poverty charity the Trussell Trust this week. The trust, which also runs foodbanks across the country, was talking about holiday hunger.
Last year the number of supplies given to adults decreased slightly in the summer months, whereas the level of support needed for children was markedly higher. There is extra financial pressure on families to provide main meals during the school holidays and for families who rely on free school meals this can be crippling.
Food banks, and baby banks should not become a permanent feature of our communities. But whilst the root causes have to be tackled somebody still has to treat the symptoms.