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Ilkley churches’ poverty relief
2:11pm Thursday 10th October 2013 in News
Churches are looking at more ways of helping local families living in poverty, following the setting up of foodbank collection points in Ilkley.
A member of Churches Together in Ilkley (CTI) involved with the establishment of a foodbank this week told Ilkley Parish Council churches are looking at collecting emergency food stores locally, getting involved in a credit union, and trying to help people on internet access as benefits claims move online.
She said local people in urgent need of food could contact the Citizens’ Advice Bureau at the health centre, Sure Start centre, talk to a health visitor, be referred by the Department for Work and Pensions, or approach the churches directly.
Food collected in Ilkley is distributed by the Salvation Army in Keighley, Councillor Paul Kitching, who attended a recent CTI meeting, told this week’s Ilkley Parish Council meeting a recent study identified 161 Ilkley families living in need, and there has been a 50 per cent rise in rent arrears in the district since the introduction of the ‘bedroom tax’.
He pointed out that Ilkley residents claiming Universal Credit will have to travel to Guiseley or Keighley to register weekly as they cannot do the necessary regist-ration in town.
Coun Kitching would like the parish council, based in the “grossly under-utilised” Ilkley Town Hall, to work with CTI over internet access provision.
Council chairman Councillor Mike Gibbons said Coun Kitching would have to raise the matter for inclusion on the agenda at the next meeting, as it was not on the agenda on Monday.