FoodCycle, the charity that aims to make food poverty, loneliness and food waste a thing of the past, is in need of volunteers as it throws open the doors to welcome the locals of Broxtowe-Aspley for a free community meal . This is FoodCycle’s second opening in Nottinghamshire this year, a reflection of the vital need for services like this as people across the East Midlands continue to be affected by the cost-of-living crisis.
Launching on 16th May at Woven St Martha's Church and Hope Centre on Frinton Rd, the weekly free meal provides great food and conversation every Tuesday at 6pm for anyone who wants to come along.
FoodCycle East Midlands Regional Manager, Martha Skinner says:” We are thrilled to have opened our second Project in the East Midlands, introducing FoodCycle to the Broxtowe-Aspley community. As the cost-of-living crisis continues to hit people hard across the country our service is more vital than ever. We look forward to providing a warm space, friendly chat and a nutritious meal to anyone in the community who needs it every week, no questions asked.”
FoodCycle recently released a research report highlighting how ‘community dining’ is the answer to tackling loneliness and food insecurity. Written by social eating and community food systems expert, Dr Marsha Smith of Coventry University and supported by a survey of 2,000 people*. The survey found that near to 2 in 3 agree that not enough is being done by local councils to promote community dining projects. It also highlighted that we are a nation of solo diners, with 24% saying that they eat alone every day of the week, Yet, one in two believe mental health is benefited by eating together. In terms of hurdles to finding social connection, it found that 96% of the population have not heard of community dining projects but near to one in two would attend if one was available in their area.
FoodCycle Needs You
FoodCycle Nottingham Broxtowe-Aspley is looking to recruit new volunteers and Project Leaders. Flexible volunteer roles without a minimum time commitment are open to anyone and include food collection, surplus food coordinators, cooking, hosting and running Projects.
Serving up free weekly community meals using food that would otherwise have gone to waste, FoodCycle is a vital service that relies on its volunteers to provide nutritious food and conversation across the UK.
James, FoodCycle Volunteer says; “It’s often said that the more we give, the better we feel. Volunteering increases your own sense of worth, provides a sense of accomplishment, and keeps you moving and thinking. You are part of a team – working alongside new colleagues from different walks of life and of different ages to achieve a positive outcome. And… it’s fun. The interactions which take place in that three or four hours are really stimulating. The banter with guests and chats your fellow volunteers are a revelation. How much we can learn, when we are given a glimpse in to the lives of others. The greatest benefit is the joy of giving. I have had people reveal that if it were not for us, they would not have eaten that day, at all, or if they had not come out to our meal, they would have spent another evening alone and lonely. You get a sense of having done some good, something of value.”
FoodCycle’s free community meals are open to all, and guests range from low-income families, people affected by homelessness and those who cannot afford to buy food. No questions asked, you can just turn up and take a seat.
Without volunteers, FoodCycle cannot provide a vital service to the community who have come to rely on the chance to sit down to a free, three-course meal every week.
The free weekly meal at FoodCycle Nottingham Broxtowe-Aspley takes place every Tuesday at 6pm Woven St Martha's Church and Hope Centre, 137-139 Frinton Rd, Nottingham, NG8 6GR
Other East Midlands locations:
FoodCycle Sutton-in-Ashfield takes place every Wednesday from 6pm at The Magdalene Centre, Church Avenue, Sutton-in-Ashfield, NG17 2EB