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Fantastic response to food bank funds crisis

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By Fiona Reid
Fantastic response to food bank funds crisis

A £20,000 funding crisis faced by a foodbank network in the region has sparked an outpouring of support -  including a single donation of £5000.

Mark Frankland, of the First Base Agency in Dumfries, raised doubts about the future of the foodbank system, describing it as being on a ‘funding cliff edge’ due to a major cash shortfall.
But just seven days after issuing an appeal for help, Mark said: “Yet again our local community has proved itself to be bloody fantastic.”
Noting that by Wednesday nearly £9000 had already been raised towards the £20,000 total required to see the foodbank through to March 31 2017, he said: “Over the course of seven days First Base’s immediate future has been secured.
“Yet another crisis has been averted.”
First Base requires £40,000 each year to run its foodback service, with the main centre in Dumfries and 20 collection points elsewhere in the region.
And he describes an increasing trend towards families seeking support.
But at the end of August, Mark had said: “We are running out of cash. Fast.”
However, as of Wednesday, more than 100 people had donated money via JustGiving.
While thanking all those who have contributed so far, Mark said: “One donation stands out of course – £5000 from Mark Jardine.
“Unbelievable generosity.”
Mark says the town’s funeral director has buried many ‘painfully young’ clients of First Base, which also tackles drug and alcohol issues, and he added: “To receive such an unbelievable vote of confidence from Mark means one hell of a lot, believe me.”
Making a donation from charity The People’s Project and his Dumfries-based business Jardine Funerals, Mark Jardine said: “I’ve always supported the foodbanks.”
Arguing a real social need for such a service, he added: “I think a lot of people in Dumfries and wider society don’t realise that it is a necessary requirement in this day and age, and I think it really should be an extension of the welfare state.
“So it’s something that’s been close to my heart.”
To support the continuing fundraising effort, visit

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