We recently launched an online cost of living hub to help residents struggling with money this winter. The hub brings together advice, support and resources available for people across Brighton & Hove.
One of the core sections of the cost of living hub is focused on food support. This gives information about food banks, community food hubs, and low-cost food shopping, emergency food support, free school meals, and Healthy Start vouchers for parents of children under the age of 4.
The hub also signposts additional support for people struggling to pay for food, energy and other essentials through the government’s Household Support Fund and our Local Discretionary Social Fund.
Councillor Phélim Mac Cafferty, leader of Brighton & Hove City Council, said: “We are horrified by the ongoing pressures that residents and local businesses are under because of the cost of living crisis.
“The cost of living hub has been created to help ensure no-one is forced to go hungry or choose to either heat or eat this winter.
“This is a practical resource to help residents find the support they need quickly and easily, without shame or stigma.
“From food banks and affordable grocery shops, to emergency support for people in a crisis, the hub is a useful guide to help the most marginalised people in the city navigate what’s an extremely worrying period.”
How you can help
If you’d like to support people in Brighton & Hove who are affected by the cost of living crisis, you can donate to the Brighton & Hove Cost of Living Crisis Campaign or donate food, time or money to support local food banks and community food projects.
You can also join Brighton & Hove Food Partnership’s Food SOS campaign to support local food banks and raise awareness as demand surges and donations fall.
Councillor Mac Cafferty added: “Sadly the situation facing the city’s food banks is stark – they tell us that those who have previously donated are now coming to them for help.
“Money and food donations have dropped by two thirds which means many food banks are using their precious income to buy produce while demand is higher than ever before. So I’m asking everyone to please dig deep to help.
“Thank you to everyone that has given to the Brighton & Hove Cost of Living Crisis Campaign and those who have donated food to their local food banks. This generosity will deliver help and hope to those most affected by the cost of living crisis.
“The council is proudly playing its part to support the Food SOS campaign and we have installed food donation points in council buildings to help staff and councillors join the campaign too.”
The new food donation points for dry long-life food goods can be found in the receptions of Brighton Town Hall and Hove Town Hall and at the staff entrance of Bartholomew House.
You can find more information about donating food or helping food banks on the Brighton & Hove Food Partnership website. You can also donate food at most supermarkets.
Residents can also access money advice, help with energy bills, health and wellbeing support, and a warm welcome directory of indoor activities through the cost of living hub.
The council continued free school meals during the October half term and will do so again over the Christmas holidays, February half term and Easter holidays.
Our Holiday Activities and Food (HAF) programme is now taking bookings for the Christmas holidays.
The programme provides free activities for children and young people who receive benefits-related free school meals. Children and young people will receive a free balanced meal as part of their day.