How Can I Get Food?

Bow and Bethnal Green Foodbanks both operate an open door policy – we do not require referrals. This is emergency help, especially for people who do not meet the criteria for other foodbanks. All you need to do is come to the session, no paperwork, vouchers, residential or other restrictions, and we do not turn people away empty handed. The queues can be long, and we thank your for your patience whilst the volunteers prepare the start of the session. We kindly ask you to respect the line and stay in order of arrival, as queue-jumping will not be tolerated. 

Shopping bags are provided, but it is recommended to bring a shopping trolley or backpack if possible to help you carry your food parcel home.

Bow Foodbank Location – Mondays 08:30am-12.30pm

Bromley-by-Bow Community Centre
St Leonard’s Road,
E3 3BT

Bethnal Green Foodbank Location – Wednesdays 2:00pm – 7:00pm

Raine’s Foundation School
Approach rd
E2 9LY

In order to provide everyone who asks for help with something, we can only provide a limited number of items, about 3-4 days worth of food for a small family. For children living with you, we can offer some extra items in addition to the main bag. Currently, we can offer a choice of bags: meat, fish or vegetarian. We also have a ‘no-cook bag’ for those without access to a kitchen.

  • Anyone can just turn up, no referral is needed. No ID or paperwork is needed. Registration is very basic. We also ask for the number of children (under 18) being looked after at home.
  • There is a limit of 12 visits per person which applies at both Bow and Bethnal Green. Clients are offered 12 visits total across both sites.
  • Currently each adult receives a set number of items, and each child a small extra bag. So it is important that all adults in the house come to the session.
  • Please also wear a mask and use hand sanitizer, keeping 2m apart from others at all times. There are toilets available.
  • We are not able to offer home deliveries unfortunately.
  • You can send a friend, neighbour or volunteer (e.g. from a mutual aid group in your neighbourhood) to collect from the session for you if you are self-isolating. They will need to queue the same as everyone else.
  • Please respect the queue and stay in line in the order of your arrival. No one goes away empty handed.

If you need help to collect a food bag on Mondays, please let us know by emailing us at: