West Somerset Food Cupboard Newsletter, October 2022

Dear friends and supporters of the West Somerset Food Cupboard

A big thank you to all who responded to our plea for extra volunteer help, particularly with driving to collect donated food. The response was fantastic, and we’ve been pleased to welcome a whole new group of fabulous willing and able people to the volunteer team over the past couple of weeks as a result. This has really shared the load and enabled us to continue to adapt the work to the current need in our community.

One of our newest volunteers has helped get a new offer underway at the Tuesday Pantry sessions. Once a month, Linda Dibble, known to many as teacher of food technology at West Somerset College, is turning fresh produce that arrives on a Tuesday morning into a simple, nutritious dish for Pantry members to taste test when they arrive in the afternoon. Linda has no idea what ingredients she’ll have to work with until the Fareshare chiller van arrives mid-morning so there’s definitely an element of ‘Ready Steady Cook’ about the challenge. She writes out a recipe as she goes, and this is given to members so they can try to recreate their own version of it at home. Please see our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/WSfoodcupboard for more details. 

Here are Linda, Pantry Assistant Mike and Trustee Clare serving up the delicious Potato, Broccoli and Bean Bake at this month’s cook up, and one of our young members enjoying the taste test.

Of course, as well as the Tuesday Pantry sessions, parcels of non-perishable food items are packed and distributed to those in need throughout the week every week, normally by local support agencies and sometimes by the Food Cupboard team, depending on the circumstances. We can’t do this without the reliable food donations that you generously support us with. Thank you to all who make donating food a regular commitment. If you are in a position to continue supporting us in this way, here’s the list of food items that we are currently running low on: 

If you represent a group or organisation planning a Harvest Festival celebration in the next few weeks, with a view to donating produce to the West Somerset Food Cupboard, please refer to the list, and talk to us first so that we can co-ordinate this. Thank you.

Throughout September, 124 emergency food parcels were distributed across the local community; the total so far this year is 865.  These aren’t numbers we are proud of though – we’d love there to be no need at all for what we do! But until that happens, we are actively seeking to ensure that everyone who needs emergency food at this difficult time knows how to access it. Please do share our website address (below) in your community so that people can find out more. 

If you are in a position to continue to help with food donations, here is the list of items that we are currently running low on:

  • Tins of fruit
  • Tins of cold meats
  • Tins of vegetables
  • Pot Noodles or Mug Shots
  • Individual custard pots
  • Small bottles squash

From Ali, Mike and the West Somerset Food Cupboard team

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