We’ve only gone and bloomin’ done it!
In 2017, when Better Food hit 25, we set ourselves a challenge to raise £10,000 towards a project that would have a real and positive impact on the people in the community we hadn’t been able to reach. After the stories told at our fabulous feast to raise funds for homelessness charity St. Mungo’s left barely a dry eye in the house, we were set on continuing our work to support their invaluable services in Bristol.
The only missing piece of the puzzle was how to use the project to deliver our mission of creating a better, fairer food community. Enter Square Food Foundation, a local charity bringing cookery skills to people from all walks of life, from their HQ in Knowle West and out in the community.
Working with these two fantastic charities, Streets to Kitchen was born. We would set about raising £10,000 for Square Food Foundation, enabling them to deliver on-site training at St. Mungo’s Recovery College, Bristol. The cookery course would reach people affected by homelessness in our city, teaching them new skills and qualifications, and empowering them through increased confidence and wellbeing.
After 18 months, a yoga breakfast, a pumpkin party, chickpea raffles, book sales, spoonsful of goodwill, office equipment sales, student junk food meals, countless charity products, and many, many generous donations from our customers and friends through our Fundsurfer page, we have reached our target.
£10,000 was set as the sum that would allow Square Food Foundation to run a full year of weekly classes at the Recovery College. The first six-week pilot ran even before our target was met, and now with the first few fully-fledged classes also complete, it’s possible to see the first twinkling of the impact we hoped to achieve when we first set that ambitious goal.
What’s already clear is that there’s enough enthusiasm paired with a big enough vision to extend the life of the project beyond its first year. The project holds to potential to become a long-term programme, which enables peer to peer learning and gives its participants the skills needed to form a shared space to create, serve and share good food. And so, with this in mind, we’re launching head first into another year of fundraising, asking our staff, our customers, and our friends to join us for the ride.