CRISIS hit families in Chepstow are to be given a helping hand in time for Christmas when the town’s foodbank officially opens next month.

The initiative, run by Churches Together with backing from national organisation the Trussell Trust, is to give out its first three day emergency supplies of food on December 3.

The opening of the foodbank has taken longer than expected, but it is full steam ahead now supermarkets, companies and residents have come on board to support it.

The organisers have received large donations from several supermarkets, with the Chepstow Co-Op providing 20 boxes of pasta, cereal and UHT milk.

Ron Murphy, who has helped with the project from the start, said Tesco and Waitrose, Caldicot had agreed to let volunteers run food collection days.

A charity hog roast in the village of Itton raised £500 for the foodbank, while school children donated food during the harvest festivals, Mr Murphy said.

Sarah Coleman, whose husband Martin is the pastor at the Bridge Church, one of the handout points, was appointed coordinator of the project recently.

She works in the community, running the Busy Bees toddler group and as a result knows some people are suffering.

“There is poverty in Chepstow and I think some of it is hidden,” she said.

“Where people don’t know where to turn we hope we will hear about us and they can be fed.”

Residents eligible for a food parcel will be handed a voucher by care agencies, which they can exchange at two distribution points.