Suffocated by inflation, the Restos du Coeur are calling for help

Posted Sep 3, 2023, 2:08 PM

Inflation also hits the Restos du Coeur. The ociation created by Coluche in 1985, which distributes food aid to the poorest, has announced that it will reduce the number of its beneficiaries next winter for lack of means. About 150,000 people could no longer have access to it.

“Today, we are not strong enough to absorb the flow of people who need food aid”, regretted Patrice Douret, the ociation’s president. “If nothing is done, we could have to close within three years,” he warned.

The Restos du Coeur are overwhelmed because of the “very significant increase” in the number of people who are now using food aid. They are also faced with an “increase in operating costs” linked to inflation.

More and more beneficiaries

Patrice Douret launched Sunday “an appeal to the political and economic forces of our country” for the “launch of a food emergency plan” at the microphone of TF1. The ociation has already welcomed 1.3 million people in 2023, compared to 1.1 million for the whole of 2022. And in recent months, its budget for food purchases then redistributed free of charge to beneficiaries, has doubled.

“It’s really heartbreaking, but we’re going to have to mively say no to people we could have taken in before inflation and we’re going to have to reduce the amount of what we give to people who fit our criteria,” deplored the president of the ociation. Clearly, the amount of remaining to live to be eligible for Restos du Coeur will be lowered. But despite this measure, the ociation needs an additional 35 million euros to end the financial year in balance.

It expects to serve 170 million meals this year, up from 140 million last year. Its director also expressed his anger, explaining that he had been asking the government for help for months. “We have not been heard enough,” he said. The Restos du Coeur provide 35% of food aid in France, with a budget of 200 million euros per year from donations from individuals, companies and public aid.

With AFP

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