The 12-week community relief effort in response to the coronavirus crisis has finished but many people are still struggling and in need of support.

That's the message from Nicola Bradley who has spearheaded the work of North Belfast food banks since the pandemic struck.

"We are solely relying on donations at the minute," she said. "And we would appreciate any help we can get to keep this service going for as long as possible."

An emergency food bank at the Duncairn Arts Centre has closed and Nicola and her team have relocated to their original base at the Ardoyne Food Bank. "There is still a lot of people within the community who are really struggling," she says. "There are people who are having trouble getting benefits and we are still seeing a lot of people coming through our doors asking for help."

Appealing for donations of funds or non-perishable food and hygiene items, Nicola says ever contribution will be deeply appreciated and put to good use. We appreciate anybody who could give any sort of toiletries, baby nappies, wipes or cleaning products such as washing powder or detergent," she adds.

Belfast City Council and the Department of Communities bolstered emergency relief operations from mid-March until this week to meet increasing need across the city but as lthe ockdown eases, most groups have now wound up their weekly parcel delivery services and are gearing up towards resuming their community service operations.