We do distribute some non-food items, such as female sanitary products. 

If you want to donate other items, such as clothes and blankets, it may be better to approach other local charities. For more information, please get in touch.

We take clients’ privacy very seriously. Only those staff/volunteers who absolutely need to see your details will have access to them. 

You may have seen some clients named in interviews or videos. These people have agreed in advance to this. 

Yes, vouchers expire seven days after the date of issue. Please contact your referrer if you run into difficulties redeeming your voucher in time.

Yes.

Ask us!

You can contact us using our online form, email info@lutonfoodbank.org.uk, message us on Twitter or Facebook, call us on 01582 725838, or write to us at: Luton Foodbank, PO Box 1379, Luton, LU1 9PS. We’ll try to answer your question, and if we can do so, you’ll probably see it added to these FAQ pages.

 

Some high-profile politicians and pundits have alleged this, but a report commissioned by DefRA (the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs) disagrees. You can download the report here.

The report’s authors went so far as to state:

We found no evidence to support the idea that increased food aid provision is driving demand.

All available evidence, both in the UK and internationally, points in the opposite direction. Put simply, there is more need, and informal food aid providers are trying to help.

But you don’t need a Government report to work this one out. At every stage of a Luton Foodbank client’s journey, he or she is offered professional support and encouraged to take the right steps to remedy their situation. Significantly, most foodbanks—including Luton Foodbank—operate a policy limiting the number of uses someone can make of their service. Any so-called “dependency” would have a maximum duration of about two weeks. Since 87% of our users are back on their feet after only one or two visits, the pundits clearly didn’t do their homework.

 

If you really are still struggling, please contact us so that we can make an assessment of your situation.

We work in partnership with Citizens Advice, who provide advice and support on all sorts of issues: money, benefit, housing or employment problems.

Main page: Get advice

Anyone can find they’re unable to cope with food costs, but you will need a voucher in order to claim food parcels. See one of our referrers to see if you qualify for a voucher.

Main page: Get food

You may be facing crisis if:

  • your benefits have been stopped/changed/sanctioned
  • you’ve lost your job
  • you’re suffering from illness or disability
  • unable to cover your living costs due to a short-term problem

Does this describe you?

Look at our “get help” page to see whether you could qualify.
Get help

You can get foodbank help up to five times a year. All of our distribution sessions are attended by professionals from Citizens Advice who can offer guidance on how to recover from the crisis that led you there.

If you need halal meat, we can replace standard tinned meat items with a voucher, and information about how to redeem it.

Our standard food parcel contains enough food for three days.

We have weekly distributions across the town. The referrer who issues your foodbank voucher will also be able to tell you about the locations and times most convenient for you. To get in touch with a referrer, click here.

We have found many recipes which use typical food parcel contents.

Find our YouTube recipes here.

Main page: Get recipes

Free and confidential advice is available at Community House, 15 New Bedford Road.

Times: 9am-4pm, Mon-Fri.

Call Luton Access for an appointment on 0344 245 1285.

Main page: Get advice

Please do NOT call at our office for food parcels. Click here to find out how to get a voucher and redeem it.
 

If you are experiencing a financial crisis and cannot afford enough food, you should call:

Mon-Fri: Luton Borough Council Crisis Support on 0800 456 1673 or Citizen Advice Bureau on 0844 245 1285.
Sat: Call at Discover Islam, Upper George Street.

If you are assessed as being eligible for help, you will be given a voucher to take to one of our food distribution points.

Main page: Get food