Over the last 3 years the volunteer-led food group, based on Sandy Lane at Accrington and Rossendale College, have been opening their doors for people to collect food.
Created after a conversation 3 years ago between Charlotte Scheffmann, Dean of Higher Education and James Crane, Facility Worker, the Food Share group is proud to have rescued over 25,000kg of food, otherwise destined for landfill.
Charlotte said: “Accrington and Rossendale College purchase the food from FareShare, a charitable organisation who aim to reduce food waste and relieve food poverty. This is our way of helping the environment, contributing to sustainability and also giving back to our local community.
“During the pandemic we have seen an increase in people using the food group and it is really important people know they are welcome to use this service, no matter their personal circumstance. Come along to help the environment, save food from landfill and feed your family.”
The food group is open every Wednesday 9:15am to 11am, 50 weeks of the year, only closing for Christmas and New Year.
People are invited to turn up at the Sandy Lane entrance to the college and make their way down the right-hand-side of the building where smiling volunteers are ready to help.
Kyle, Food Group co-ordinator: “Using the food group is really simple. People come along with their empty shopper bag and we fill it for them with a wide range of food… everything from fresh fruit to frozen chips! There are different items every week and, although donations are welcome to help keep the service running, we do not ask for any payment in return.”
Alex, Volunteer at the Food Group, added: “There are no barriers to visiting us, no questions asked, no details taken. Alongside local residents we also have students and staff that use the food group and on average we help around 15 families every Wednesday.”
As part of the Community Champions Initiative, Hyndburn Borough Council are working to highlight and celebrate the fantastic work so many organisations are doing across the borough, whilst making sure residents know how to access help, if they need it.
Lyndsey Sims, Hyndburn Community Champions Project Lead said:
“This fantastic group at Accrington and Rossendale College existed long before the pandemic and they have stepped up even further after need has increased in the last year. Well done to everyone involved, especially the volunteers who are dedicating their time to this great cause, and to the college for choosing to invest in this way.”
For more information about the Hyndburn Community Champions Initiative visit: https://www.hyndburnbc.gov.uk/communitychampions/