OFFERING financial advice to clients of Swindon Foodbank is a positive move.

Following on from a successful pilot scheme, it makes excellent sense, and because it is to be available at the foodbank, we can be sure the advice in question will be delivered in a respectful way.

The foodbank has a well-earned reputation for treating the people who use its services as the respectable and dignified human beings they are, and there is no reason to suspect that this attitude will not carry over into the new project.

Not all of its clients will require financial advice, of course. Many know only too well why they have had to seek out the services of the foodbank.

As we have noted before, something as simple and devastating as the loss of a job or a temporary hitch in the benefits process can leave people without sufficient funds to buy basic necessities.

In those instances, need for the foodbank recedes when personal circumstances improve.

Nevertheless, there are some people whose quality of life could benefit immensely from the advice of financial experts. Debts might be better managed and prioritised, for example, and alternative training schemes and assistance explored.

Unfortunately many of those most in need of help are unable to obtain it because it tends to cost money. The new service, in contrast, will be free.

Among those offering help will be experts from Citizens Advice and Christians Against Poverty, both organisations with reputations every bit as positive as that of the foodbank itself.

We look forward to hearing that the scheme is an immediate success, with clients helped out of situations which might otherwise have left them in despair.

Everybody deserves such basic assistance and everybody deserves dignity.