Covid-19 Update

See how Swindon Food Collective are operating during the lockdown period.

How to get food

We are here to help

Maybe you are still waiting for benefits? Unable to work? Only feeding the family and going without yourself? There are many reasons why people are unable to afford to eat every day. We understand that it's a big step to ask for that help.

We give out the food and do not issue vouchers or make referrals so you have to go to an external agency.

How to get food

If you find yourself in the situation where you are struggling please do not worry or hesitate about getting in touch, many of us have been there. There are many front line care professionals such as midwives, health visitors, your child's schools, Citizen Advice Bureau and social workers amongst others who you can go to, they will talk you through your current situation, giving you the best guidance for the way forward. 

Once you have a voucher or text referral has been set through to the distribution centre of your choice, then come along and collect your food parcel.

Swindon food collective van

Where to get a referral

You can get a referral several ways:-

Located at either Sanford House in the town centre, Cavendish Square, Park North or at Pinetrees Community Centre, Pinehurst. You can also between 10 am and 4 pm, Monday to Friday on 0808 2787813 or via email at

You can contact your children's school welfare/safeguarding officer or head teacher as often schools can refer

Get in touch with your church or vicar

Some voluntary organisations that you might be aligned to or know of e.g. Turning Point, Nelson Trust, SSAFA, Threshold, Salvation Army, Women’s Refuge, counselling and other support services etc.

    You can call the Probation Service on 01793 536612 or the Youth Offending Team on 01793 464662.

    Contact the Swindon Borough Council Emergency Assistance Fund by phone on 01793 465252. This is open to anyone who has lived in the Borough of Swindon for over 6 months – you do not have to be a tenant of Swindon Borough Council.  You can be a home owner or in rented accommodation. The Swindon Borough Council Emergency Assistance Fund provides emergency assistance to Swindon residents who need it:
    • where there has been an unexpected serious emergency or crisis, which includes COVID-19, and there is a significant risk of harm to you or your family if no assistance is given
    • where a vulnerable person in the community needs help with basic housing needs or food to prevent homelessness or hardship
    • where you or your family requires assistance moving into, or remaining in the community

    You can speak to your social worker.  You can contact Social Services at Swindon Borough Council on 01793 445500.

    You can call the Community Midwives on 01793 604020 or the Health Visitors on 01793 465050 or 01793 465030.


    1. How many referrals/food boxes can I have?

    People are allowed 3 boxes in any 6 month rolling period. However, if there are extenuating circumstances that can be verified by the referring agency this can be extended in liaison between the referring officer and the Swindon Food Collective Manager.

    2. Do I need to be on DWP benefits to get a food box?

    No. Anyone, even if they are working, who is facing a crisis or emergency situation that means they do not have enough money to feed themselves or their family can apply but they must be referred by one of the referring agencies, schools or statutory services that partner with Swindon Food Collective.

    During school holidays families whose children receive free lunches can be referred by the school. Parents or Guardians should request vouchers/referrals for food during holiday breaks prior to the school closing or if the administration office is open during holidays, contact the school via email as discussed with the Welfare Officer before the holiday period

    Crisis, predicaments or emergencies can be issues such as waiting for benefits to be awarded, bereavement, unemployment, illness, sudden changes to family income, housing or family circumstances, accidents , divorce and separation etc., this list is not exhaustive.