Summerhill Community Food Hub
We have developed our Community Food Sharing Hub with many different strands that engage with the wider community on many different levels through food. We have planned this model to become sustainable through our free food boxes / Community Pantry accepting donations and / or memberships for homemade cooking sessions and delivery donations where required. We can manage all these strands and ensure the Dignity Principles are instilled throughout these processes in helping our wider community members.
We are able to deliver this model by volunteers on a large scale due to wide partnership working and being the Dumfries Hub for Fareshare Glasgow. We are very proud to be the platform that connects local groups together with Fareshare that in turn ensures we have an excellent variety and stock of food coming into this area on a weekly basis.
We have developed our own food hunger action plan whereby our Community Pantry is just one of the many food projects to provide that helping hand to people in the wider community.
The Pantry has its own three strands:
Weekly Membership for cooking classes and weekly shopping
Food Pantry drop in
Community Food Boxes
Each strand helps to reduce food shopping bills; access fresh and healthy food; reduce debt and enables tight household budgets to stretch a little further. There are also many social benefits through our Community Pantry too.
Why a Pantry ? Because we know some people are struggling financially and we know people should have access to healthy food and to be able to choose food shopping in a dignified manner.
We also use food as a tool to engage with people, develop new skills, provide additional support and signpost people onto relevant services.
Our wide range of food activity also has a big ripple effect upon our volunteers learning or teaching new cooking skills. These training sessions and peer mentoring allow us all to put the knowledge gained from group sessions and online training into practice in a more appropriate workplace setting.
Reducing food poverty and accessing food / household essentials and clothing in a dignified way is a really important piece of our daily work at Summerhill. In one year up to March 2021 we provided over 25000 meals through community food sharing boxes that were a lifeline for some of our most vulnerable in the communities.