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Christchurch City Mission struggling with rocketing demand for food handouts

Rocketing demand for food handouts in Christchurch is leaving the City Mission struggling to keep up - and they're expecting the trend to keep climbing as rent and petrol prices increase, and the power subsidy stops for the summer.

Last September the Christchurch City Mission sent out 723 food parcels - that number climbed to well over 1000 last month.

Among them was William Davies who told 1 NEWS asking for help wasn't an easy step to take.

"It does feel belittling asking people for food because you want to do things yourself, you want to provide for your family yourself," he said.

"I've just had to bite the bullet and come and get some food you know. It's just getting harder and harder and harder each week to put food on the table, pay my bills, pay my power and look after my family. It's just really poverty stricken to be honest."

Foodbank volunteer Janet Peagram said she'd never seen so many people in need in her 20 years.

"When I first started we were only seeing up to 20 people a day, now thats more than tripled in size," she said.

Christchurch City Mission's Matthew Mark said it was "heartbreaking" to see more and more people suffering.

"An increasing number of people for the first time and some really heartbreaking stories where they have literally gone without for weeks."

The foodbank is now making up to 77 parcels a day, but because of the demand their fridge and many shelves have run dry.

Mr Mark said the team was concerned, with one member even in tears last week, about having to ration back on what they were giving out to families.

The City Mission is appealing for food and financial donations to restock the shelves.

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The charity is expecting the trend to keep climbing with the high costs of rent and petrol. Source: 1 NEWS