Surge in sweet donations at Lewisham Foodbank after outrage at people “concerned about putting crisps and chocolate on shopping list”

By Grainne Cuffe, Local Democracy Reporter

The best things in life are free, they say. But for those of us in the real world, there is chocolate. Even that costs money, though.

All the more odd, then, that some people seem to think that people living below the poverty line should not be given chocolate treats by food banks.

Thankfully, the backlash against giving deprived families some cocoa love has led to a surge in sweeties to Lewisham Foodbank.

The charity, which helps families in need when they can’t afford food, received a huge outpouring of support after tweeting that some followers “raised concern” about putting crisps and chocolate on its shopping list.

A spokeswoman for the food bank, based in Forest Hill, said: “Some followers have raised concern about us putting certain items on our shopping lists (eg crisps and chocolate).

“Let me clarify – whilst we agree that they are of little nutritional value, we also believe in blessing our clients with a treat from time to time.

“It’s up to you to choose from our shopping lists to donate. And don’t forget we also give a large bag of fruit ‘n veg to households, as well.

“Thank you for your feedback, which we have taken on board.

“And thanks for your continued support.”

Highlighting the post, Lewisham Central councillor Aisling Gallagher said: “The fact they had to tweet this fills me with shame and frustration.

“Ever eaten something nice just because you wanted to? For God’s sake, everyone deserves to eat nice things, no matter how little money they have.”

Cllr Gallagher went on to donate £100 worth of chocolate to the food bank.

Others followed suit, urging the charity to “spend it on as many crisps and ice pops and biscuits as you can”.

Most were shocked people would complain about it in the first place.

One said: “Imagine resenting a child getting some chocolate.”

Another said: “Yeah, God forbid anyone who is poor should have a moment of a normal life.

“If you could also put them in the workhouse and feed them gruel, that would teach them not to be poor, right?”

One said: “People need to stop moaning, if I want to put a bar of chocolate in the local food bank, to attempt to make someone’s life a bit less shi**y, I will.”

Another said: “Imagine this being of concern to constituents rather than the actual existence of child poverty and food banks in the sixth richest country in the world.”

Pictured top: Lewisham Foodbank


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