You are now leaving the Turn2us site. Turn2us is not responsible for content on third party sites.

Emergency Information - Foodbanks

You might find yourself caught short of money and need help with essentials like food or paying your bills. Please look at the range of support options we discuss in this guide.


Foodbanks, largely run by volunteers, provide emergency boxes of food (usually a supply for a minimum of three days) and offer support for people in a crisis. The food is donated by members of the local community. Many also give personal hygiene items such as toilet paper and soap.

Some foodbanks offer hot meals and advice sessions. They may also be able to refer you to other local agencies for further help, depending on your situation.

To find your local foodbank, use the Trussell Trust website, which also has information on how foodbanks work.

Other places where free or low cost food may be available

You can ask your local council, local charities or Citizens Advice about other local sources of free or low cost meals. These might include:

  • Soup kitchens

  • Places to go for free or low cost breakfasts or hot meals. For example, as part of their religion's teachings, Sikh temples (known as gurdawaras) provide langar (free vegetarian food) every day that everyone who visits them is welcome to enjoy, regardless of their faith, gender, age or status. People sit on the floor together to eat the food which is cooked and served by Sikh volunteers.

  • Emergency breakfast schemes for children

  • FoodCycle schemes: A charity that runs projects in England using surplus food that might otherwise go to waste to feed people who struggle to afford the basics to eat.

You can find your local council's details on the Gov.UK website.

You can use our Find an Adviser tool to find your closest Citizens Advice or other local organisations that may be able to help you.

Last updated: December 2018

Anything wrong with this page?

Tell us the problem

Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Please enter what you were doing
Please enter what you'd like to report
Please enter the security code shown

Thank you

If you would like to tell us more please visit our contact page


Check benefit entitlement

Find out what means-tested benefits you might be entitled to, including tax credits.

Use the Benefits Calculator

Grant Search

Search our database of grant-giving organisations

Search for grants