HOMELESS people and families in need were given a festive boost at a food drive in Dorchester.

Mayor Stella Jones helped collect donations at the Corn Exchange for the Dorchester Foodbank.

It gave away around 1,000 parcels of supplies in 2013 and volunteers say the service is more in need than ever.

Residents can make donations at the Dorford Centre on Mondays between noon and 2pm, or Wednesdays and Fridays between 10am and noon.

The Foodbank was started by Dorchester Baptist Church as part of the work of Dorchester’s churches.

It is funded by donations of food from various churches, schools, and people in and around Dorchester, with some gifts of money from individuals and from the church itself.

Anyone in crisis who has no food or money to buy food, can apply to get supplies from it as long as they have a voucher.

Coun Jones also led a charity raffle in aid of Routes, which helps homeless people in the Poole area, and Nightstop Dorset, which recruits and trains residents across Dorset to open up their homes to children at immediate risk of becoming homeless.

The service, which is part of Action for Children, is the only one of its kind in the area.