Chapelgreen Community Hub/Community Fridge collect surplus food from FareShare Yorkshire to use in their community fridge. This food, that would otherwise be sent to landfill, is intercepted by FareShare Yorkshire and directed to organisations like Chapelgreen.
They open up their community fridge on a Saturday morning, inviting individuals from the local area to come and support their campaign to stop quality food from going to landfill. In the 12 months they have been open, they have acquired 350 members, of which 50 to 55 come to collect surplus food each Saturday.
Individuals who are members of the community fridge have shared some heartwarming comments;
“You are a lifesaver. I started to come to the community fridge a few months ago because I was in need and didn’t know anyone. You have helped me cope financially and helped me to feed my family. Also, through coming here I have made lifelong friends and we support each other which is good. Your fridge created a community, thank you.”
“I would not have been able to feed my family if I couldn’t come to your fridge, thank you.”
These comments, directly from the members, truly reflect the voices and emotions of those who attend the community fridge. They not only have access to much-needed support with food, but they have gained strength and resilience through engaging with other members who may also reflect their own difficulties in gaining food access for their families. They share food conversations and offer moral support too.
More members were voicing their difficulty in paying fuel bills, so Chapelgreen have launched an airfryer and slow cooker initiative. This has developed a great deal of interest from members joining, giving them the ability to cook hot meals. Before the launch of the Lending Library, members were refusing to take meat products because they couldn’t afford to cook them. The initiative have sparked the interest in members to ask- “what and how to cook using these implements?”- which has given the Chapelgreen the opportunity to support this at the community fridge. Members are encouraged to attend cookery demonstrations and workshops so that they can learn how to cook healthy meals on a budget for their families.
One member was thrilled to receive an airfryer;
“I’m so excited! I’m going to cook a lovely meal tonight in my airfryer for my family. I have chicken, potatoes and stuffing which I have got from the FareShare Yorkshire delivery. Thank you so much.”
In a recent survey conducted by Chapelgreen, they found that the majority of their members commented on how they are eating more fruit and vegetables since joining the community fridge. A spokesperson said;
“We are all so thankful for FareShare Yorkshire’s weekly deliveries, we also receive frozen food twice a month. It has been very beneficial to both our team and members because the wide range of food supplies has given our members confidence to try new food items. By trying new things, they’re also sparking conversation with volunteers and discussing different ways to cook food for their family members.
“One of our members told us ‘You will never know how much you have helped me and my family these past few months, if it wasn’t for you I wouldn’t be able to feed them.’ . We are very grateful to FareShare Yorkshire’s support.”
The ladies in the photograph joined in with one of Chapelgreen’s cooking demonstrations and were sampling onion soup with cheese toastie croutons. They had been made using ingredients from FareShare Yorkshire’s deliveries and the ladies vowed to try and make it again at home.