Community Food Provision

Food Poverty

In 2014, the Cambridge City foodbank distributed 40,000 emergency food boxes, and helped almost 5,000 people – a third of them children; these figures represent double those seen the previous year.

Run entirely by volunteers, the Cambridge Foodbank has six distribution centres across the city, with at least one centre open each day of the week (Monday – Friday). These are:

  • St Paul’s Church, Hills Rd, Cambridge (Monday 4-5.30pm, Friday 2.30-4.30pm)
  • Chesterton Methodist Church, Chesterton (Tuesday 10.30am-12.30pm)
  • Our Lady and English Martyrs Church, Hills Rd, Cambridge (Wednesday 10am-12pm)
  • Cambourne Distribution Centre, Cambourne (Thursday 10am-12pm)
  • Church of the Good Shepherd, Arbury (Thursday 11am-1pm)
  • Waterbeach Baptist Church, Waterbeach (Thursday 10.30am-12.30pm)
  • C3 Centre, Coldhams Lane (Friday 10.30am-2pm)
  • C3, Trumpington (Friday 11am-1pm)

The Foodbank relies on donations from a supporting network of schools, churches and local organisations, which regularly hold collection days. Collections also take place outside supermarkets, with volunteers asking shoppers to buy and donate particular ‘essentials’ and non-perishable food items (see here for a list of participating stores). The warehouse is open for donations on Monday and Friday from 9.30am to 1pm.

-foodbank-photo gallery 3-photo_6The Foodbank works with more than 80 agencies, such as health professionals and social workers, to identify people in crisis. These individuals are issued with a red Foodbank voucher, and referred to their local Foodbank. This is exchanged for a food box containing three days’ worth of emergency food. Volunteers also meet with individuals in crisis to discuss their problems, potentially directing them to further agencies which may be able to help with different problems.

You can visit their website to check current volunteering opportunities and register interest, as well as to discover other ways of getting involved.

Cambridge Holiday Lunch Programme provides free lunches during school holidays for families with children who ordinarily receive free school lunches. They usually run on several weekdays at various venues across Cambridgeshire during the school holidays (except Christmas when it is by invitation only). The programme is supported by Cambridge City Council as well as a number of community organisations and churches.

To find out more, the coordinator can be contacted on email here:

Or you can call the Buchan Street Neighbourhood Centre on 01223 508149

See our page Community Food Waste Projects