MSP for Clackmannanshire and Dunblane has welcomed the opening for applications of a £500,000 fund from the Scottish Government which will address immediate need and underlying causes of food poverty.

Food aid organisations are now able to apply for funding through the £500,000 Emergency Food Fund (EFF) which opened for applications on 2 June 2014.

The Scottish Government fund is part of a £1 million investment in food aid, with £500,000 already committed to charity FareShare which redistributes surplus food from retailers to charities supporting their local communities.

Applications are invited for larger grants, up to four of which will be awarded at between £30,000 and £50,000 each. Smaller grants of up to £10,000 each will also be awarded, with £1000 being the minimum value for any individual grant.

Grants will be given to projects that concentrate on preventing food crisis recurring, those that build connections between food aid providers, advice and support agencies and organisations working to promote healthy eating and reduce food waste.

Commenting, Mr Brown  said: “The amount of people experiencing food poverty in Scotland is simply not acceptable. My office makes daily referrals to local foodbanks and it is clear that welfare reform, benefit delays, benefit sanctions and falling incomes are all having a detrimental impact on people locally and accross Scotland.

“The Scottish Government’s Emergency Food Fund will help food aid organisations combat food poverty in Scotland by working in partnership with other local agencies. I urge relevant local organisations to apply.

“One of the most depressing trends over the last few years has been the rapid rise of food poverty in our country the only upside to this is seeing communities come together, gathering and distributing food for those in need. It is important that we support these people and organisations through initiatives such as the Emergency Food Fund.

“Most people recognise that the increase in foodbank use is directly linked to welfare reform and benefit cuts. Only an independent Scotland will have the full powers we need to protect people from poverty and help them fulfill their potential in work and life.

Notes to Editors

In April 2014 the Scottish Government announced £1 million to support work of emergency food providers. £500,000 is to be given to organisations who work with those in need through the Emergency Food Fund. The remaining £500,000 has been allocated to the charity FareShare which redistributes food from supermarkets to communities and charities.

The Emergency Food Fund is now open for application. Organisations looking to apply should visit: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/People/welfarereform

Application deadline is w/c July 11, with successful projects due to be announced in early August.

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