A CHURCH foodbank which was on the brink of closure when it issued a desperate plea for funding during the festive period has seen its prayers answered.

The Church Angels project in Port Glasgow is back on track again after the community rallied to the cause following an appeal in the Tele.

The charity, based at the town's United Reformed Church on Brown Street, had been struggling badly amid a massive increase in demand for its help and organisers said they feared for the future.

But since they made their funding appeal donations have been pouring in. 

It meant they were able to help no fewer than 115 families in December, handing out 272 bags full of supplies.

Volunteer Margaret Wilson said: "Over Christmas we received a flood of donations.

"We received a council grant of £5,000 and £500 from the Warm Hand of Friendship fund.

"It made a big difference as we were near the wire before.

"We have had lots of new companies coming forward who had never donated before and St Francis' and Holy Family churches donated every week too."

Church minister Reverend Susan Henderson admits the influx came just in time.

She told the Tele: "It meant that over the Christmas period we had lots of food to give out, lots of extras and treats to help families."

The increase in donations is proving vital as demand for the foodbank remains strong.

Rev Henderson said: "We have been exceptionally busy. We open in the morning at 10am and often run out before 11am. So donations are always gratefully received."

One of the organisations which has come to the aid of the charity is Port Glasgow West Community Council, who donated £200.

Tommy Rodger, its secretary, said: "We wanted to acknowledge the good works of the Port Glasgow Church Angels helping many people who have been hit hard by years of austerity.

"Our community council members periodically identify a local group delivering important voluntary work to help the vulnerable in Port West. We then vote on which group and good works merit our support, and make a donation to support them."

"Equally, it means we are able to promote the work of our community council, informing the community that we are actively working in our community."

Anne Ross, chairperson of the community council, added: "People are struggling, through no fault of their own. I think if anyone can help a little they can help a lot."

Reverend Henderson was swift to thank the group for their kind donation.

She said: "It's absolutely wonderful. It's great that the community council are helping to support the work that goes on in Port Glasgow.

"This will help us to buy the food we need."

Church Angels Foodbank is open on Tuesdays and Thursdays between 10am and noon.