Status: 02.10.2023, 07:00 a.m.
By: Sebastian Grauvogl
Working in a confined space: the helpers of the food bank of the BRK Miesbach. © Archive CEFR
More and more needy people are coming to the food bank of the BRK Miesbach. They are still desperately looking for new premises, because the space for distribution and storage has long since become too scarce.
Miesbach – Ute Krause does not speculate on a location right in the heart of the old town. After all, a visit to the food bank is known to be a sensitive topic, which is also associated with shame for quite a few people in need. Nevertheless, the new location of the BRK Miesbach's food distribution should already be one that can be reached on foot for most people, Krause emphasizes. But although the head of the food bank has been desperately looking for new premises for a year, she has received exactly one offer to date – in Müller am Baum. "That," sighs Krause, "was a bit too far off the beaten track."
As reported, since the opening of the new service center of the BRK district association, the food bank has been located in the eastern industrial estate. However, the space on the ground floor is no longer sufficient to adequately meet the sharp increase in demand. Since the number of refugees has increased again - also due to the Ukraine war - the distribution of goods has to take place outdoors due to the large crowds in the parking lot, which is neither compatible with the desire of the needy for anonymity, nor with winter temperatures. As autumn progresses, they will soon be back in the house, Krause fears. "We don't really want to expect people to have such a food bank issue," says Krause. Knowing full well that this is likely to happen. As of now, the CRPD still has no other option in sight. At the same time, more and more people are coming to the food bank from week to week. "It's going to be critical," Krause warns.
Inflation drives low-income earners to the food bank
Simon Horst, Deputy Managing Director of the BRK District Association, underlines this assessment. Not only the increased number of refugees, but also the advancing inflation would bring more crowds to the food bank. "Inflation is hitting low-income earners in particular, who can no longer afford to shop in the supermarket," says Horst. In order to be able to cope with the rush, the BRK needs more space for the issue of goods. 50 to 60 square meters instead of the previous 40 are necessary. Furthermore, there is a need for a toilet for food bank helpers and eaters, a retreat room and a warehouse for the delivered food.
The latter is also becoming increasingly important because the volume of donations has recently been declining. Producers are also under increasing cost pressure, Horst explains. As a result, the food bank helpers often have to travel longer distances to pick up food directly from the manufacturers. Of course, you can't do this every day, but sometimes only once a week. "Then we'll take a whole pallet with us," says Horst. But for this, of course, the food bank needs appropriate storage space. "Unfortunately, we currently have to do a lot of 'just in time'," sighs the deputy managing director.
Also at the limit in terms of personnel
But that's not all: In terms of personnel, too, the CRPD is increasingly running at the breaking point. Whether it's helpers at the distribution or drivers and co-drivers to pick up the groceries: "We urgently need support," says Krause. At the same time, Horst strives to set the requirements as low as possible. "We are grateful for any information," he says. "And we are as flexible as possible." Ultimately, it's all about the rooms, the entire equipment is taken over by the BRK itself.