A new community support hub has been set up in Perth city centre to help tackle food poverty.
The service at the Mill Street Cafe will provide food and cooked meals, as well as household essentials and sanitary products.
It will be a central hub for groups working in partnership, including Giraffe, North Church, the Salvation Army, Perth Street Pastors, Perth City Centre Community Hub, Letham4All, TullochNet, and Perth and Kinross Council.
The base will also direct beneficiaries to other support networks within the voluntary and statutory sectors.
Sally Bonnar, who helped create the new initiative, said the idea was born out of work they were doing to help those in need during the current pandemic.
She said: “We were originally just doing shopping and prescriptions and support but we realised that there was a lot of people in the city centre in food poverty at the moment.
“This is for people that don’t meet the foodbank criteria but are struggling for food food for themselves or for their families.
“Because a lot of the agencies are closed people can come here. It’s a response to the struggles people are having as lockdown goes on.”
The new Mill Street hub follows similar ventures set up by community groups, including Letham4All, to help tackle growing food poverty issues within the area.
Last year a child food poverty study revealed that one in eight households in Perth and Kinross are classified as being amongst the most socially and financially challenged in the UK.
Perth City Centre was the worst affected area for child poverty within the local authority’s boundary, with 25% of children suffering as a result.
The Fairer Futures: Tackling Child Poverty Action Report showed that 4,000 children within the council area were living below the breadline, a number which could rise in the aftermath of the covid-19 pandemic.
The new Mill Street hub operating from the Giraffe premises will be open from 10.30am until 1.30pm on Mondays and Thursdays in the first instance.