The Robin Hood Fund has relaunched to support the most vulnerable people in Nottingham this winter.

The fund raised over £100,000 for food banks, homeless support, vulnerable women, isolation, and small charity support in Nottingham in 2020 and aims to provide further support for vulnerable people expected to struggle in the cost-of-living crisis.

One of the charities money will go to is Hope Nottingham, a trust that runs a network of 15 food banks across the city.

Hope Nottingham’s Beeston centre’s food stock

Hope offers several services including drop in cafés, sessions with citizens advice and debt advisors and a job club.

Founder and ambassador Nigel Adams, 57, said: “We usually see the peak use of food banks in January, February, and March because it is colder and that is when people have the least amount of money.”

He explained that they have seen a rise in people collecting food already but added: “I don’t think we’ve seen the worst of it yet.”

Over the past 12 months Hope have given out 25,000 food parcels across their food banks and anticipate for this to increase in the coming months.

Food overflow at Beeston centre

They receive lots of support from food collections in the local community, including at Nottingham Forest, schools and even at concerts.

When approached by the Robin Hood Fund Nigel informed them that the main concern is not food but will be running costs, particularly gas bills as they are predicted to go up from £200 to £800 in April.

Financial aid from the fund will allow Hope to continue their work in supporting those who need it most.

This work will include giving access to people to support with energy bills that will be offered from official channels as many people won’t be able to complete online applications for this due to lacking electronic devices.

Nigel said: “Most poverty has its route in a lack of social support from others. Most people need family, so what we try to do is become family for those people and we think it works.

“Helping people become part of a supportive community becomes more important than whether they’ve got quite enough food that week as in the long run that’s what helps them the most.”