Generous shoppers have helped keep hungry families fed by donating to Foodbanks.

The Braintree Area Foodbank has reported supply has met demand in recent months at its centres in Braintree, Witham and Halstead.

The Foodbank had its busiest day of last year on December 23, but experienced an overall drop in demand in December.

Residents who have been issued with vouchers by a partner agency, such as the Citizens Advice Bureau and Jobcentre, can collect three-day emergency food packages from the Foodbank.

There are four distribution centres in the district, located at Christ Church and Braintree Baptist Church, Braintree, Witham Methodist Church and St Andrew’s Church in Halstead.

Braintree Area Foodbank publicity officer Sarah Maddox said: “The foodbank was not really any busier over the festive period compared to other times of the year, although we did peak on December 23 when we gave out 305kg of food, our highest this year.

“However, we actually had some quiet weeks in the lead up to Christmas and demand has now dropped off slightly.”

More people received emergency packs from the Foodbank in November than December.

Sarah said: “The need can really vary month by month and even week by week.

“Thanks to people's generosity, we have had plenty of supply to cover demand.

“Our grateful thanks to all those who have given, through supermarket collections and by dropping food in via local churches and other centres.”

To find out more about the work of the Braintree Area Foodbank, including details of how and where to donate food, visit