INVERCLYDE Foodbank has sent out an appeal to the community in the midst of the coronavirus crisis: 'please don't forget about us'.

Pastor Fraser Donaldson has praised the work being done by organisations all over Inverclyde to help vulnerable individuals.

But as the foodbank runs short on essential supplies, he is pleading with people to remember how important it is.

Fraser said: "These are unprecedented times we are living in.

"There is now a realisation that a crisis is here and this is not a short term thing, it's become a way of life.

"It's really encouraging to see loads of people coping together and coming up with new ideas, initiatives and suggestions to reach out to those who are vulnerable within our community - but please don't forget organisations and charities that are already doing that.

"Think about organisations trying their best with limited resources; charities that already exist and will continue to exist long after new ideas over and normality begins to resume.

"We have existed for years to serve the vulnerable and needy in our communities through tried and tested methods and practices.

"It's important for the community to get behind us so we're able to be there for them and to make sure we're best-placed to help when demand increases."

The foodbank runs through the i58 project - a partnership between Greenock Elim Church and the Trussell Trust.

The team is in desperate need of stock to maintain basic food parcels - including UHT milk, small bottles of diluting juice, tinned fish, rice pudding, custard, and tinned fruit and veg.

In line with coronavirus public health information guidance, bags are pre-made, ready to be handed to people who need the service.

The team is ensuring there is minimal contact and a swift transition between someone arriving for their parcel and leaving again.

Restrictions have also led to the postponement of the tea and coffee and social aspect of the foodbank for the moment.

Foodbank manager and i58 project lead Lesley Jackson said: "It's with a heavy heart that we're unable to provide the social aspect at the moment but it's the safest thing to do for our volunteers and for our users.

"We really want to remove the stigma of people coming in and asking for help."

The i58 project provided emergency food for 8,000 people in 2019 - and the team expects to reach that figure earlier this year.

The foodbank opens on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 1-4pm.

Foodbank users can nominate a friend or neighbour to pick up on their behalf.

For those donating, online shops can be delivered straight to the foodbank base in Laird Street and payments can also be made via Paypal.

Fraser added: "We have been busier over the last few weeks and we are expecting that to increase in the coming weeks and months.

"It's amazing to see that in the midst of crisis community spirit rises up."

If you want to help the foodbank you can call 01475 787177 or email