The main fundraising campaign to supply food to 270,000 people suffers a drop in contributions by changing the system of making a cash deposit instead of delivering products
“If our forecasts are confirmed, we will not be able to maintain the supply of basic products to feed vulnerable families. “This is how forceful Lluís Fatjó, director of the Barcelona Food Bank, is in the absence of two days Great Collection campaign. At the moment, according to Fatjó, the income received from donations this year have fallen by 40% compared to the previous year, although the number of beneficiary households has increased significantly. Today, 267,000 people in Catalonia depend on social entities to be able to do the shopping and fill the fridge.
This year, like the previous one, contributions to the Grand Recapte are made only economically. When customers pay for the purchase in large supermarkets, they can decide to make a contribution to this entity. “The format does not help, people prefer to deliver food than to give money“, explains Fatjó. Although, according to the Bank director, the problem is also that of the post-pandemic situation.” There is an important contrast: people want to forget the pandemic and the hardships, and we are not aware that there are people who have been left behind in an enormous precariousness. “, adds. The figures of the fall of income are provisional, that have facilitated some of the great supermarkets that have adhered to the initiative.
Increase in beneficiaries
At the moment, the Food Bank provides food to more than 600 entities and neighborhood groups that, in turn, help fill the fridge to 267,000 people in Catalonia. Are even more than during the same period last year, the year of the coronavirus pandemic when there were 262,994 beneficiaries. In 2020 there was already talk of record figures, which even surpassed the worst years of the crisis caused by the financial crash. According to the entity’s calculations, more than 60,000 people have not recovered from the social crisis derived from the pandemic, for more ERTES or social aid that have been approved.
During the past year, the Great Recapte managed to raise 7.8 million euros, which were used to buy 5,000 tons of food. If these forecasts are fulfilled, this 2021 they would not reach five million euros. “Losing three million euros of donations having more beneficiaries is a huge problem for us. We will not stop supplying food, but we will have to give less,” Fatjó predicts. An exceptional measure that they already had to apply in some months of 2020. The example is evident with the consumption of milk. “Every month we spend more than one million euros, 12 million in a year, to buy four liters of milk per family. If these expectations are met, we will not be able to maintain these figures for this year,” Fatjó supposes. The same can happen with other staples such as rice or pasta. According to the latest published data, one in four Catalans is poor. In the case of children, the figure rises to one in three. Furthermore, 6.2% of the Catalan population survive on less than 300 euros per month.