On the breadline: Food banks in Merseyside
A record number of people in the North West turned to food banks in the last six months because they cannot afford to feed themselves, a charity says.
The Trussell Trust said its network of food banks across Lancashire, Merseyside and Greater Manchester fed more than 13,500 people since April. This compares to just 10 people in same period last year.
Food Bank Network Development Officer Lynda Battarbee said: "Food banks are becoming increasingly important as people struggle with the rising cost of living and the static nature of income levels.
"In many cases this is forcing people to make difficult decisions between heating and eating, particularly as winter sets in.
"Here in the North West, thousands of people a year are finding themselves going without food and are having to turn to food banks for help."
The reasons range from redundancy or reassessment of benefits to receiving an unexpected bill on a low income.
In addition to 20 Trussell Trust food banks in the region, FareShare North West has over 70 community food groups providing hundreds of people each day with meals, snacks or food parcels.
FareShare works with food manufacturers to stop food being wasted. Every year, 200 tonnes of surplus food are distributed to people in food poverty.
This week, the BBC is looking at food banks, the people who use them and why the need for food handouts is increasing.
Shoppers at Tesco can make food donations at supermarkets all weekend (1 & 2 December), with the help of FareShare and the Trussell Trust.
Selected items (listed) can be donated to the following food banks:
Apostolic Church, 433 Liverpool Road, Huyton, L36 8HZ: Monday 11:00 - 14:00 GMT
Centre 63, Old Hall Lane, Kirkby, L32 5TH: Tuesday 11:00 - 14:30 GMT
Tango, St Mark's Church, Deycroft Avenue, Northwood, Kirkby, L33 9TE: Thursday 11:00 - 14:30 GMT
Huyton Parish Church, Huyton Lane, L36 7SA: Friday 11:00 - 14:00 GMT
Tel: Barry Cooper - 07731 789794
Frontline Trust, Lawrence Road, PO Box 38, Wavertree, Liverpool L15 0FH
Monday 12:00-15:00; Wednesday 13:00-15:00; Friday 13:00-15:00 GMT
Tel: Paul Edwards - 0151 733 3373 Ext 221
Salvation Army, Cavendish Drive, Walton, Liverpool, L9 1HQ
County Road Methodist Church, Ludlow Street Entrance, Walton, Liverpool, L4 3RJ
St Christopher's Church, Norris Green, Liverpool, L 11 1BQ
Good Shepherd, Lower House Lane, L11 2SF
Christ Church, Sedgemoor Road, Norris Green, L11 3BR
All Saints Stoneycroft, Broadgreen Road, Liverpool, L13 4BW
St Andrew's Church Hall, Adshead Road, Clubmoor, L13 9AL
Tel: Julie-Anne Wanless - 0151 226 3406
Bridge Chapel Centre, Heath Road, Garston L19 4XR: Monday and Friday 10:30 - 12:00 GMT
Noah's Ark Centre, Ganworth Road, Speke L24 2SA: Tuesday & Thursday 10:00 - 12:00 GMT
Tel: Nicola Hawkes - 0151 281 9717
Liverpool Fare Share, Unit 9, Phoenix Park, Goodlass Road, Speke, L24 9HJ
Monday to Friday: 09:00 -17:00 GMT
Tel: Charlene Spencer - 0151 486 1139
Grange Baptist Church, Whetstone Lane, Birkenhead, CH41 2QS: Monday 12:00-15:00 GMT
St Anne RC Church, 19 Ruskin Avenue, Rock Ferry, Birkenhead, CH42 2DB: Monday 12.30-15.30 GMT
Salvation Army, Vincent Street, Birkenhead, CH41 2RH: Tuesday 10.00-14.30 GMT
St Paul's Church Hall, St Paul's Road, Seacombe, Wallasey, CH44: Wednesday 14.00-15.00 GMT
Thompson's Mission, 2 Hemingford Street, Birkenhead, CH41 4AP: Thursday 10.00-13.00 GMT
St Catherine's Chuch, Church Road, Tranmere, CH42 5LF: Friday 10.00-13.00 GMT
Birkenhead & Tranmere Children's Centre, Cathcart Street Primary School, Birkenhead, CH41 3JY: Friday 12.30-4.00pm
Salvation Army, Vincent Street Birkenhead, CH41 2RH: Saturday
Tel: Jayne Branch-Murray and Rev Roy Cullen - 0151 638 7090