“In the last few months we have started seeing some families where both partners work.”
A food charity in Boyle, Co. Roscommon has noted a change in the profile of families and individuals receiving food parcels in recent months.
Speaking to the Irish Times, the Boyle Family Resource Centre has said that families where both partners work, as well as parents whose adult children still live at home as they can't afford to move out are now among those registering for the charity's services.
As the cost-of-living crisis prevails and substantial gas and electricity bills continue to affect households, many have nothing left in the kitty for the weekly food shop after paying for everything else.
The rising cost of motor fuel has also been a huge factor for households, says the charity.
“Apart from the cost of getting to and from work, parents whose children are involved in the GAA are questioning whether they can actually afford to bring a child along to a match. Roscommon is a long county so they might not be able to afford to drive to some games,” said Emer McFadden, who oversees Food Partnership at the Resource Centre.
Ms McFadden also revealed that some families now in receipt of food parcels are being reassured by volunteers and staff, as they feel bad or embarrassed about availing of the service. “As they put it they feel bad at having to “resort” to it, but we tell them we are here for them whenever they need us, whether that’s once a week or a fortnight or monthly. It is nothing to be embarrassed about,” she said.
As the resource centre is a "hive of activity with plenty of reasons to visit", special measures such as a discreet location and scheduled time slots are in place to ensure service users are made to feel comfortable.
Some 76 people are registered with the charity to receive weekly food parcels and anyone who applies is accepted with no questions asked and no judgment.
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