St Johns Church, along with all the other churches in Linlithgow, supports the Trussell Trust West Lothian Foodbank with regular collections of food.
The initial contact with Trussell Trust for West Lothian was spearheaded by Whitburn Pentecostal Church and the Steering Group contains many members from that Church.
Since the first West Lothian Foodbank opened in Whitburn in 2012 there are now 10 distribution centres throughout West Lothian. This means that there is a Foodbank available every day of the week throughout the Region. All donations are collected weekly and taken to a Warehouse in Livingston where teams of volunteers sort them, and from where distribution centres can order supplies needed. A Charity shop in Whitburn supports the work of the Foodbank and helps any clients in need of clothing or bedding/towels/small household items.
Foodbank operates with the support of over 150 volunteers and three part time staff. It aims to provide a three day emergency supply of food to those in need locally. Clients are referred to the Foodbank by agencies such as Social Work, CIS, Advice shop and Health Visitors. Once they enter the Centre all clients are welcomed, offered tea or coffee and something to eat. No-one is judged or made to feel awkward. They are given space and time to share their story and offered relevant support information from other agencies. We try to offer some choices with things like tea or coffee and cereal or porridge whilst the rest of the allocation is made up from a given list that aims to provide a balance of nutrition. The food is then placed into carrier bags for the client to take away. If we have toiletries, pet food or cleaning products then we can offer these as an extra.
Trussell Trust is a Christian Charity and so volunteers will offer to pray with clients if this seems appropriate. Often clients will ask where the food comes from and this gives us an opportunity to share our faith and talk about God’s love.
At the present time St John’s collects for Foodbank on the last Sunday of each month. Any donations can also be handed in at Cross House on Tuesday and Friday afternoons.