AN AYRSHIRE East Foodbank worker says that “every little helps” this year when it comes to donations, due to the shortage of items they currently have.

The Cumnock Chronicle is joining forces with the Ayrshire East Foodbank and East Ayrshire Council to ask for readers’ help in supporting residents in the area who are struggling as Christmas approaches.

With the cost-of-living crisis leaving many families in a worse financial position than ever before, this week we’re launching an appeal to Chronicle readers to support those in greatest need this festive season.

Our ‘Bags of Goodwill’ campaign will reach a climax in the December 14 issue of the Chronicle, when we’ll include a free paper bag with every copy of the paper - which readers can then fill with non-perishable food items to help residents struggling to make ends meet over the Christmas period.

READ MORE: The Chronicle launches its festive appeal to help residents in greatest need

The campaign in the run up to what Ayrshire East Foodbank workers are calling the “toughest Christmas period for some time”.

A drop in donations, coupled with an increase in the amount of service users that the foodbank is getting has led to fears about what this winter could mean for many people.

Team leader Carol Foster says that any donations, small or large, will go such a long way in helping people this year.

She said: “We had someone who donated £20 every second month. Unfortunately she passed away, but her daughter has continued that donation, and it’s just a constant drip like that – and it helps us so much.

“It’s getting harder here and we just have to work with what we have a lot of the time.”

Carol added: “We had a client in a couple of weeks ago.

“This man had been rehomed and he came to us a referral through CVO East Ayrshire [which runs the food bank]. He said he had no cooking facilities whatsoever, so he was just looking for stuff to make sandwiches.

“At that time I was thinking about what we could give him, because we had no cold meat or anything like that. But, fortunately some of our volunteers have donated crockery, so I was able to give him a kettle, a couple of cups and couple of plates, so we could give him some cup-a-soups and pot noodles and things like that.

“But that shows the situation some are facing, and we’re not always fortunate enough to be able to help all these people.”

Information from East Ayrshire Council on the help it is offering to hard-pressed residents is published on page 13 of the Chronicle.