Dumbarton and the Vale residents who have lost their jobs should feel no shame in asking for help, the area's foodbank has said.

West Dunbartonshire Community Foodshare said they have been busier than ever helping feed families across the area during the pandemic lockdown.

But they said they feared many more needed their support but were too embarrassed to ask.

Trustee Mary Marra said: "Lots of people use our service for many different reasons. Many of those who have contacted us recently have lost their job because of the current circumstances – this is not their fault.

"Many businesses have had to close because of the lockdown and social distancing rules so lots of people have found themselves, perhaps for the first time in their lives, without a job and without money to pay for everything.

"We, at Foodshare, worry about such people, as many of them may feel too embarrassed to go to a foodbank because they have always worked and paid their way, never imagining that they would ever be in this situation.

"Some may have savings, some may not, but it is said that we are all only two salaries/wages away from having to use a foodbank."

Ms Marra said while some residents use their services temporarily, others might need extra help in the early weeks before their first wage. Others turn to Foodshare after getting into debt and struggling to pay it off.

She said: "Some may come every week, but others may only come the week their rent is due because they know that once they have paid that, they will not have enough money left for food.

"Quite a lot of people come during difficult times for them but once they are on their feet again, they are very generous with donations to us."

Foodshare said they were grateful as always for the generosity of donations of cash and food, especially over weeks of lockdown.

Donations can still be made at ASDA in Dumbarton and Clydebank, Sainsbury's, Iceland and the Balloch Co-op.

Ms Marra added: "For the foreseeable future we will be doing home deliveries of food and, if you need our help, all you have to do is phone us.

"This situation we are in will not last forever. Yes, it is difficult, and perhaps more difficult for some than for others, but there is a sort of normality ahead for us – perhaps never again the normal there was before this virus, but people will get back to work and feel in control of their lives again.

"We have seen, so many times recently, wonderful examples of people helping others in many different ways. Please, if you need it, let us give you that helping hand."

If you have been badly hit by Covid-19 circumstances, the foodshare can be contacted on 01389 764135 from Tuesday to Friday, 10.30am to 3pm. They can also be contacted through Facebook.