Food packages were introduced by Department for Communities (DfC) in the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic and were a short-term measure to support those who were advised to shield by the Department of Health. This support has now ended and food packages are no longer available.
We are acutely aware of the ongoing needs of the most vulnerable in our society and of the need to make sure they have access to alternative sources of help, including access to food.
I am unable to go food shopping - how can I get assistance to get the food I need?
- Help from family and friends - if possible, please ask family or friends to do your food shopping when they are doing their own and bring your food to you.
- Supermarket delivery - most of the larger supermarkets offer online delivery options and many have increased their delivery capacity to have more delivery slots available. If you are not able to secure a delivery slot, smaller shops such as Spar, Eurospar and Vivo stores, as well as a large variety of independent retailers, also offer home delivery. A list of stores offering this service, along with their telephone numbers, is available on the Consumer Council website.
- Priority delivery - vulnerable consumers may be entitled to a priority online delivery slot. A list of the stores offering this service, along with their direct telephone number, is available on the Consumer Council website.
- Delivery advisory services - there are other online resources to help secure an online restaurant delivery, including:
- InYourArea (link opens in a new window) is a collaboration by Belfast Live and small businesses to help advertise which restaurants and takeaways are offering delivery in each postcode area. There is a map on the Consumer Council’s website.
- If you have access to, or use Facebook, then Who is delivering? Northern Ireland (link opens in new window) is a Facebook page that shares information on which businesses are delivering fresh food, groceries and pre-made meals in your area. You can see what is available near you using this interactive map (link opens in new window)
If you still need assistance, the COVID-19 Community Helpline will connect you to a wide range of support, including assistance with access to food, that is available locally. Freephone 0808 802 0020, text ACTION to 81025 or email firstname.lastname@example.org