People facing hunger in London have a few options of where to turn to, ranging from free food banks and assistance from charitable organisations to crisis payments from local councils.
There are individual welfare schemes in all London boroughs set up for the provision of free support, typically in the form of emergency food and grocery parcels. At their discretion, they can arrange for either a parcel of food to be given to you or issue you with a voucher and information on where to redeem it. These are emergency programmes that aim to help low-income households in a crisis and as funding is low, there is no guarantee of help. The councils across the city of London focus on their borough only.
Emergency hunger prevention from London boroughs
Barnet – the crisis fund is run from PO Box 2016, Pershore, WR10 9BH. Telephone 020 8359 4242 for more details or read more about the Barnet Crisis Fund.
Bexley – food needs can be met by the council local welfare provision. Telephone 020 8303 7777 to get in touch with their Customer Contact Centre for assistance.
Brent – local welfare assistance. Apply by calling 020 8937 5796. Any support for food will usually be in the form of a pre-paid debit card. Click the hyperlink to find details on crisis payment from Brent council.
Bromley – welfare fund available. Their postal address is London Borough of Bromley, PO Box 352, Hartlepool, TS24 4FH. Find more details on the Bromley welfare fund scheme or call 020 8464 3333 to speak to an adviser.
Camden – residents can look into crisis awards, which can offer food to people in an emergency. The welfare scheme will focus on families that are receiving benefits. Read here for more details on Camden welfare grants, or speak to someone on 020 7974 4444 from Monday – Friday, 8am – 6pm (except bank holidays).
City of London – families in this central London borough can apply for vouchers from a support scheme. The council partners with local organisations to provide basic needs and household support, which can include a parcel of food, baby nappies, and more. Find out how to apply for the Emergency Support Scheme in London and learn about the types of assistance available. Their homeless team is contactable on 0207 332 1804.
Ealing – local welfare assistance. For applications to a grant, including information on food vouchers, dial 020 8825 6237. The council will offer support to those in poverty. Learn how to apply for a grant in Ealing.
Enfield – emergency support scheme available, run by Citizens Advice Bureau. The telephone number to call is 020 8375 4170. They can also signpost people to food banks and soup kitchens in London. For eligible low-income families, a grant of up to £1,500 is available for food, groceries, or other needs. Find the phone number and information for the Enfield Emergency Support Scheme.
Greenwich – this borough provides the emergency support scheme- telephone 020 8921 2078 to get help today. For families faced by sudden crisis or disaster such as a loss of income. The scheme can offer a parcel of food, groceries, and more. Find how the Greenwich Emergency and Community Scheme can help your situation.
Hackney – discretionary crisis support scheme available. Address is 300 Mare Street, E8 1HE. If you would prefer to speak to someone, telephone 020 8525 6350. The council can provide food and help to the vulnerable from this scheme. Get help from Hackney local welfare food assistance.
Hammersmith and Fulham – local support payments may be available. Telephone 020 7745 6464 to discuss or locate and apply for food assistance from Hammersmith and Fulham.
Haringey – support fund can offer a parcel of groceries at the council’s discretion. Phone 020 8454 7322 to register your need or, to learn how to get a voucher, find awards from Haringey Support Fund.
Harrow – their emergency relief scheme can provide a voucher to pay for food. The local authorities will only provide this form of support if the family uses the Advice Portal first. There are a number of other food and bills covered from the Harrow Help Scheme for residents of the area. E-mail email@example.com for further help.
Havering – emergency assistance scheme is for residents in the borough. Read emergency help in Havering. The council’s main switchboard number is 01708 434 343 if you would like to find out more.
Hillingdon – provides in-kind-support or grants that can be used at local food banks. The council welfare scheme can be applied to by those who are struggling to feed their families. Most of the food parcels are for people in a crisis only. Read on to find more help from Hillingdon local support or contact their adult social care team on 01895 556 633.
Hounslow – discretionary local crisis payments available. The office that accepts applications is at Civic Centre, Lampton Road, Hounslow, TW3 4DN, or find more information on Hounslow payments. The number for Hounslow council general enquiries is 020 8583 2000.
Islington – this borough offers vouchers to food banks from the resident support scheme. This government programme combines various forms of emergency support. Find out how to apply for Islington Resident Support Scheme and get information on the types of assistance provided. Islington council’s contact number is 020 7527 2000- call to get help and information on their support scheme.
The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea – welfare payments may be granted which can help to pay food costs. The council provides this for the vulnerable, such as seniors and people in poverty. Read Kensington and Chelsea Local Support Payments. Their social services number is 020 7361 3013- call to speak to someone for guidance, Mon-Fri, 8:30am-5:30pm.
Kingston – can provide food through their crisis fund. The council offers this scheme mostly for people on benefits as well as families in poverty. There are vouchers for local food banks and other support services offered. Find out more on Kingston upon Thames crisis assistance. Contact their telephone directory on 020 8547 5000 to find out what sort of help you may be entitled to.
Lambeth – emergency support scheme in place. The customer support centre is contactable on 0345 302 2312. Vouchers can be issued by the council so residents can collect a parcel from a foodbank in London. The authorities who oversee the Lambeth Emergency Support Scheme can offer additional assistance.
Lewisham – the local support scheme is the welfare solution for the borough. This can help residents acquire food and other basic needs. Read about welfare in Lewisham borough or call the council on 020 8314 6000 for more information on their services.
Newham – community and crisis support on offer. Dial 0203 373 1180 for applications. This council will issue loans for resident’s needs. Vouchers are obtainable which can be used to buy groceries, additionally, people may stop in at a food bank in the borough. More on Newham crisis support.
MoneyWorks is another programme for Newham residents. Families on a low income or even with poor credit ratings can apply for a low-interest rate loan from the council and the money can be used to buy food for children, pay for basic needs, and cover other bills. Learn how to apply for low interest rate loans in Newham, which can be used for your essential emergency needs.
Redbridge – emergency support scheme in place. For information on any food programmes, call 020 8591 9705, or find emergency support in Redbridge.
Richmond-upon-Thames – runs the Local Assistance Scheme. This welfare programme provides grants or in some cases a parcel of food. Find information on local welfare in Richmond. Their main council number is 020 8891 1411 and out of hours emergency number is 020 8744 2442.
Southwark – low-income families can enquire about the Emergency Support Scheme. The council can be reached at 020 7525 0200 or find the types of food and other services available. Read Southwark borough Emergency Support Scheme. They also have a Hardship Fund telephone number 020 7525 2434 that you can call to discuss their discretionary hardship fund.
St. Cuthbert’s – assists the Earls County area of London and surrounding boroughs. They provide practical support (such as free winter coats) along with hot meals and food. They also offer additional support for the disabled in the city. Find food and meals from St. Cuthbert’s.
Sutton – households on low-income in this borough may be given a voucher to buy food from the welfare scheme. This assistance programme is just one of the types of benefit available to help people who find themselves in an emergency situation. Their services help tackle hunger poverty and assist with other bills. Find Sutton borough grant schemes or contact Sutton Council on 020 8770 5000 to find out how they can assist your needs.
Waltham Forest – social fund scheme in place. Telephone 020 8496 3000 or read more on Waltham Forest social fund. If you wish to write to them, the postal address is PO Box 856, London, E17 9PN.
Wandsworth – discretionary social fund offered in an emergency. Learn more, including eligibility and how to apply for the Wandsworth discretionary social fund. Wandsworth Council are contactable on 020 8871 6000 to obtain help for your application or to discuss anything else.
Westminster – local support payments. For questions, call 020 7745 6464. The council will provide gift cards for buying parcels of food, groceries, and more from the welfare scheme, but any assistance is a last resort. Learn how Westminster Local Support Payments can help.
Should your council for whatever reason be unable meet your needs, below is a list of places across London to go to:
Independent Food Banks In London
Ace of Clubs is located at St Alphonsus Road, London, SW4 7AS. It is open Monday to Friday and serves low-cost meals. The staff will also offer advice and can give out a voucher to food banks if they approve the family for this. The phone number is 020 7720 2811 or read more on Ace of Clubs programmes.
Acton Homeless Concern operates two centres that offer food, including the Emmaus House. Meals, clothing, and hygiene items are provided to the vulnerable, and a large number of clients are refugees or immigrants. Find help from Acton Homeless Concern.
American International Church services the poor and needy in Central London. It is open Monday to Saturday for a free lunch. Donations run it. There is also a free clothes closet. The charity is at 79A Tottenham Court Road, London W1T 4TD. You may also phone them on 0207 580 2791 for more information.
Brixton Soup Kitchen feeds the homeless, children, refugees and the poor. The location is at Dominoes Community Centre, 297-299 Coldharbour Lane, London, SW9 8RP. Free meals, drink is combined with clothes, legal aid, and a Feeding scheme.
Chelsea Methodist Church is open Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday. The homeless can stop by the centre on 155a King’s Road for meals, including at Christmas. Call 020 7352 9305.
Christ Church London has a foodbank cafe on site. This will provide a client with up to 10 free meals upon presentation of a voucher. The charity provides other social services for refugees, the vulnerable, and families in poverty. More on Christ Church social services.
Christian Community Church provides a service known as Feed the Hungry Heart. Most of the assistance is for residents local to Hounslow, but meals can be served to anyone from London. Clients can be given a box of food, volunteers serve seniors meals, and other aid is offered. Read Feed the Hungry Heart support services.
City Mission operates across all the boroughs of London. The charity not only serves hot meals and pass out a free box of food, but they also place the homeless into shelters and the evicted into housing. Additional programmes range from Christmas meals to clothing and a bag of groceries from their main centre. Read more on London City Mission services.
Connection at St Martin’s assists single people only. Food boxes and more are available to those struggling and those sleeping rough. You can find them at 12 Adelaide Street, London, WC2N 4HW or telephone 020 7766 5544.
Deptford Reach can help those in poverty. They run a food bank offering groceries and hot meals are also served from the Reach Cafe. If you know the area, you will find them on Speedwell Street or dial 020 8692 6548. For more details on services, find information on Deptford Reach programmes.
Dunloe Drop-in Centre has free food, hot meals, and tea. Volunteers that work at the centre will also provide free advice to individuals to help solve the crisis they are facing. The location is St Saviours Priory, 18 Queensbridge Road, London, E2 8NS. Call 020 7739 9976 for hours of operation. Residents of Hackney or Tower Hamlets can also learn more on the Dunloe Centre food programmes and their services.
Ealing Soup Kitchen gives hot meals, showers, blankets, and other assistance. Address is St John’s Church, Ealing, W13 9LA. The phone number is 0208 566 3507.
Earls Court has multiple centres in London. A coffee/meal bar is open one day a week. It serves everything from free hot food to a drink or snack. The team will also help feed women, provide referrals, and partner with churches on collecting groceries, clothing, and more from the community. Find the locations of ECCP Project services.
HAB of Barnet serves a free breakfast and other low-cost meals. They also partner with charity food banks and churches in London to help the homeless and low-income households. Read more on HAB services.
Trent Vineyard runs the Vineyard Drop-in Centre. This charity will provide services to the vulnerable in Islington at Upper Holloway Baptist Church, 11 Tollington Way, London, N7 6RG. Free food as well as debt counselling may be offered. They also operate in various regions across England; find support from Trent Vineyard.
Kings Cross Christian Centre offers advice for the homeless and jobless. Those who drop in are also given food in a crisis or household goods. The location is Vernon Square in London. Telephone number is 020 7837 3976 or find more information on food and housing schemes from Kings Cross.
London Jesus Centre Food bank on 83 Margaret Street. Services from the church range from drinks to fruits, vegetables, and tinned items. Phone – 0845 8333 005.
Merton borough based Christian Care Association (CCA) do not operate a food bank but may be able to help with small quantities of essential groceries. They also provide free meals at Christmas as well as assistance to single parents and children. Find how to access Christian Care Association services.
Muswell Hill Baptist Church serves the northern London area. The address is 2 Dukes Ave, Muswell Hill, London N10 2PT. Both a food bank and soup kitchen are run by the charity. Telephone 20 8444 7027.
Salvation Army can pass out a free food parcel. Other programmes include Christmas meals as well as signposting to other London charities. Any support from the Salvation Army should be seen as a last resort. There are many centres in the city.
Siloam Community operates a cafe from Tuesday to Thursday. While the charity serves a free meal, the client to access other support services. This includes vouchers to a London food bank as well as job or housing programmes. Find a listing of the Siloam Community Services.
St Saviour’s Church – The Upper Room will help the lonely and marginalised, ranging from senior citizens to ex-offenders. Free food parcels and more is offered from the location on Cobbold Road, W12 9LN. Ring 020 8740 5688 to access everything from meals to toiletries from the food bank, or find more information on Upper Room services.
St Mark’s supports the Wandsworth borough and southern London. The church partners with almost 200 professionals to help feed the hungry. The centre provides at least three days of groceries, food, and other services for families on a low income. Learn how the St Mark’s food bank can help in a crisis.
St Paul’s Church Hall runs the North London Action for the Homeless service from their centre at Stoke Newington Road. Clothing, free food, and benefit advice is given from volunteers. Ring the church on 07891 703221 for information, or find more details on North London Action for the Homeless assistance programmes.
Thames Reach runs the Greenhouse centre in London. This is a location in which the families on a low income can drop in for a hot meal. Staff also provide advice and other support, such as vouchers to a food bank. Find how to get assistance from Thames Reach.
The Welcome Project – This not-for-profit provides practical support. This can include a bag of groceries as well as a hot meal. There is also a shower on site for the vulnerable and staff signpost clients to help with benefits. You may visit them at 2 St Marys Road, Ilford, or call 020 8514 3283.
Union Chapel provides meals for breakfast and dinner, with most of the support being for the marginalised in Islington. Find information on the Union Chapel food and low income services.
West London Day Centre provides services for the homeless, such as healthcare and work help for those transitioning out of homelessness. The charity is at 134-136 Seymour Place, Marylebone, London, W1H 1NT and may be contacted on 020 7569 5900.