A community foodbank service which helps people in need will continue for two more years thanks to new funding.

Barnet Foodshare, run by Colindale-based Living Way Ministries, takes surplus food from local shops and either distributes it to residents in need or turns it into healthy meals.

Demand for the service has soared since it was set up over a decade ago, but its future was in doubt due to the impact of rising fuel prices on volunteer drivers.

Now, the service is secure after a paid driver was taken on, with £65,000 funding over two years from City Bridge Trust – the City of London Corporation’s charity funder.

The funding will enable an extra 3,500 donations of food to be collected, providing 135,000 extra meals and saving 180,000kg of CO2 emissions by preventing food waste.

City Bridge Trust chairman Giles Shilson said: "The cost of living crisis and Covid mean more people are reliant on services like Barnet Foodshare to put food on the table for themselves and their families.

“This funding will ensure Living Way, which has a long-standing and deeply rooted role in the local community, can continue to make a life-changing difference to the people it serves.”

Times Series: Living Way service user Hinabel PatelLiving Way service user Hinabel Patel

Living Way was founded in 1990 by then midwife Hope Yoloye, initially as a telephone counselling service for her clients.

Now 71 and still inspired by her Christian faith, she continues to oversee the charity, which functions as a church on Sundays and community centre for people of all faiths and none throughout the week.

Alongside the Foodshare service, Living Way offers advice sessions on issues such as debt and relationships, classes in sewing, knitting and hairdressing and business training and mentoring.

Times Series: Living Way Ministries founder Hope YoloyeLiving Way Ministries founder Hope Yoloye

Hope said:“The demand for the Foodshare service is phenomenal – it’s just mind-blowing. Because of Covid there are people that were already on a low income or no income who are really suffering.

“I’ve been using my car to collect food but I’m getting older and for our volunteers it's getting harder because the price of fuel keeps going up. Without this funding, we would have to stop and it would mean people would remain in food poverty.”