CITY institutions have thrown their weight behind the Evening Times food bank campaign.

Rangers Football Club, Partick Thistle and Glasgow Tigers have joined NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde and Glasgow Housing Association to support our efforts to raise awareness and improve access to life-line services.

The groups and organisations are united in their bid to make sure people in Glasgow don't go hungry.

Dr Linda de Caestecker, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde's director of public health, said more must be done to help those who are struggling.

She told the Evening Times: "An affordable and nutritious diet is crucial to good health.

"I am both concerned and angry that, in this relatively rich country, people both in work and out of work do not have enough money to buy food to live on and that the number of people experiencing food poverty and having to use food banks is increasing.

"While I fully commend the work of people who give up their time and energy to run food banks and the many members of the public who donate to them, I find this reliance on emergency food hand-outs unacceptable.

"This situation is bad for health not least because it undermines recipients' independence and confidence."

GHA bosses also say too many people in the city are struggling.

Jacqueline Norwood, neighbourhood services leader for the Wheatley Group, parent company of GHA, said: "We fully support the Evening Times in its campaign to raise awareness of food poverty in Glasgow.

"We know there are too many people in our communities who are struggling to put food on the table. And while we are already working with others on a range of fronts to help these hard-pressed families, we know much more needs to be done."

Dr de Caestecker added: "NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde is totally committed to our work with partners to bridge the inequalities gap in our society which sees families go hungry because they simply don't have the money to buy food."

The Rangers Charity Foundation has vowed to set up a collection point at Ibrox and is encouraging supporters to donate to their local food banks.

Connal Cochrane, Rangers Charity Foundation manager, said: "The Rangers Charity Foundation and Rangers Football Club are hugely supportive of this campaign and of the dedicated charities and community groups who are doing so much in our city to provide emergency food parcels for local people who are in need.

WE will set up a collection point at Ibrox for donations of food and encourage supporters and the public to boost the stocks of nearby food banks.

"These food banks are providing an essential safety net for many people who find themselves in a crisis situation and we are ready to do what we can to help."

Partick Thistle Football Club is also on board, and the club knows first hand about local need having previously supported food banks in Maryhill.

A spokesman for the club said: "We realise how difficult it can be for families across Glasgow when the times get tough. Food banks are increasingly becoming an essential part of communities across the city and the work they do has a massive impact on families living in those areas.

"It is extremely humbling to see the hard work and effort that people put in, often completely off their own backs, to help those less fortunate than themselves and it serves as a tough reminder that, no matter what happens on the pitch, there is more to life than football.

"Partick Thistle has already worked with food banks in the Maryhill area this season and is proud to back the Evening Times campaign to support similar organisations across Glasgow."

AND Glasgow Tigers director Derek Smith said the community-focused club is committed to helping those in need.

He said: "Glasgow Speedway, as a unique sports club within this city, appeals to a cross-section of society from all backgrounds.

"As a community-focused club too, we are delighted to actively support this initiative and help to give something back to those in most need in what are still tough times for many.

"Thank you to the Evening Times for highlighting the modern-day plight of so many."