Ipswich Foodbarn managing director Qim Kauwhata.
Ipswich Foodbarn managing director Qim Kauwhata.

Ipswich Foodbarn hopes to deliver to continue crucial work

AN Ipswich charity is still working out how it will be able to traverse "uncharted waters" and continue its vital service for thousands of hungry residents.

There is a rapidly growing demand for Ipswich Foodbarn's services due to the coronavirus crisis, with anywhere from 3500 to 7500 people coming into their Wooden complex on a regular day.

Managing director Qim Kauwhata said there are restrictions on the number of people allowed on site and a drive through system is being trialled.

Customers will remain in their cars and staff will take their details from outside their vehicle.

Ms Kauwhata hopes to start delivering the hampers instead to eliminate that risk, and is trying to obtain three or four refrigerated vans or refrigerated trailers to do so.

"We have done deliveries before but we'd be lucky if we were doing 20 or 30 a fortnight," she said.

"We do about 150 hampers a day.

"We're probably looking at exceeding the 150 a day mark once the option of delivery is there. That will come with its own logistical nightmare as well.

"We're looking at over 250 hampers being asked for on site (with current demand). We don't have the ability to do that."

In the last four weeks, the charity has taken on an extra 300 clients.

"Normally it would take us six months to get an extra 300," she said.

"On top of the 18,000 we already have on our books, it's progressively getting worse and worse."

During difficult times for everyone, Ms Kauwhata urged people to have patience.

"These guys are on the frontline at the moment and they're all volunteers," she said.

"It's a really scary place for all of us to be in at the moment.

"We're trying to get to every single person we can get to. We are limited to what we can do."



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