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The Larder’s community kitchen seeking to address food and fuel poverty in Preston

Posted on - 16th September, 2022 - 12:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Charities, Food & Drink, Health, Preston City Centre, Preston News
The Larder is seeking funding for a project to help the local community experiencing food and fuel poverty.
The Larder is seeking funding for a project to help the local community experiencing food and fuel poverty.

The Larder is seeking funding for a new project to address the cost-of-living crisis.

“We need to get something started quickly to help people get through the winter,” said Kay Johnson, The Larder’s founder, and director.

The Larder has been working with partners nationally and locally for the last seven years to address issues around food insecurity.

Read more: Fundraiser to help The Larder pay for new windows after vandals destroyed them

“The Creative Community Kitchen initiative is based on the National Kitchen model from World War One and will provide cooking classes and communal eating in a warm, safe space,” said Kay. “The programme will be delivered over 6 months from the Larder café kitchen where our experienced Food Champions will offer cook and eat sessions to people from marginalised communities in Preston.

“Our approach is sensitive to the barriers which people on low incomes face, and by working with ‘experts by experience’, we are able to plan and deliver programmes which meet the needs of the communities we work with. Our focus is to provide dignified solutions which offer opportunities for people to build confidence and become empowered.”

The project is offering two-hour cooking sessions to participants over a six-week period, with the aim of helping 144 families over six months, starting in October. Participants will be able to take meals home for the family to try and will also receive an energy-saving thermal cooking bag which will help them to save on their fuel bills.

Read more: Preston cafe to host thermal cooking bag demo and tasting event

Thermal cooking bags can help save on fuel bills. Pic The Larder
Thermal cooking bags can help save on fuel bills. Pic The Larder

People who take part in The Larder’s creative sessions, which are held at the café during the week, will also be able to purchase a meal cooked in the sessions for a small donation. The Larder is also seeking funding to expand on the creative sessions that they currently offer, in knitting, writing, and music, to enable people to access two creative classes a day, sit somewhere warm, with company and enjoy a hot, nutritious meal.

Kay Johnson MBE, founder of The Larder
Kay Johnson MBE, founder of The Larder

“The people attending the sessions will be offered the meals that our Food Champions and students will be cooking on a pay-as-you-feel basis or they will have the option to buy from the café,” said Kay. “This ensures that everyone, regardless of personal circumstances, is treated fairly and in a dignified manner, and prevents any stigma for people who can’t afford to buy from our cafe menu.”

The Larder’s Food Champions, Kay McGovern, Jacqui Shurr, and Abida Kabir have been working at the project for over three years delivering courses. Kay and the team are getting the project up and running before the winter sets in, with it planned to run from October until April next year.

If you or your business would like to support The Larder’s Creative Community Kitchen Initiative, contact ruby@larder.org.uk.


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