RINGWOOD Foodbank is celebrating a year helping desperate families in the area.

It first opened for business on July 15 last year to give emergency food help and support to people in crisis in Ringwood and the surrounding area from its base in the Wesley Centre in the Christchurch Road.

One year on and 513 people have received food aid, of which 183 are children.

In addition, a second distribution centre has been opened in the United Reformed Church in Manor Road, Verwood.

Both distribution centres are open each Monday, Wednesday and Friday between 11.30am and 1.30pm.

The Ringwood Foodbank is affiliated to the Trussell Trust, which operates more than 400 foodbanks nationwide.

In the year ending March 2014, more than 900,000 adults and children in Great Britain and Northern Ireland received emergency food aid from Trussell Trust Foodbanks.

Like all other Foodbanks, Ringwood and Verwood rely completely on donations both of food and funds, as well as on a team of volunteers.

A spokesman said: “Our very grateful thanks to everyone who have so generously supported us in the past year – we couldn’t have done it without you.”

If you are interested in supporting the work of the Ringwood Foodbank and its two distribution centres or need more information about what it can provide, call 01425 600134 or go to ringwood.food bank.org.uk.