Disadvantaged families have received a much needed boost over the festive period after West Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner donated £50,000 to food banks.

The cash, which comes from the Police Property Act Fund, has been targeted in areas of greatest socio-economic need.

A cheque for £50,000 was given to the Salvation Army to be distributed to their food banks in Wakefield, Kirklees, Leeds, Bradford and Calderdale.

The cash from the fund contains money from the sale of property connected with crime and can only be used for one-off charitable donations.

Bradford will receive £9,424 of the total, while Kirklees will receive £6,655, Wakefield £11,093,Leeds £20,552 and Calderdale £2,276. The cash will be distributed to food banks who will then ensure those in need are helped.

The Police and Crime Commissioner, Mark Burns-Williamson, said: “As Christmas approaches more and more families are struggling to make ends meet and the reliance on food banks has become a reality.

“This money will help those food banks in the areas of greatest need to buy more supplies as the festive season draws closer and into the New Year. My pledge to communities is to make people safer and feel safer.

“This donation will go some way to addressing the needs of families and hopefully contribute towards easing the pressure on those in our communities in these increasingly difficult times. We all have a responsibility to help those in need and yet again I believe this issue reflects the fact that the severe Government cuts are really biting leaving many people and families struggling.

“Food banks are doing a valuable job of filling that void but I am pleased that through the Police Property Act Fund we have been able to help people in need across West Yorkshire over Christmas and into the New Year.”

Lieutenant Colonel Michael Highton, Divisional Commander for The Salvation Army’s Yorkshire Division, said: “We’re deeply grateful for the incredibly generous donation of £50,000 to our services issuing food provision in West Yorkshire from the West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner’s property fund. At a time when the cost of food and utilities have increased, and where wages have risen more slowly than inflation, The Salvation Army is increasingly helping people more and more with the very basics that they need to get by.”

“This donation has benefited Salvation Army Corps, or Churches, throughout the whole of West Yorkshire – from Huddersfield to Leeds and everywhere inbetween, and is going straight to the front line to help those who need our help and support.”