This week Claire Fennelow and Amelia Brown took part in a volunteer day organised by venue finder company LimeVenues in aid of The Felix Project.
Right now, 4.7 million adults in the United Kingdom struggle to afford to eat every day, and 2 million children are at risk of missing the next meal. Meanwhile, our food industry generates 3 million tonnes of good, edible surplus food each year and tonnes of this is thrown away. The Felix Project is a London-based food redistribution charity set up in 2016 to tackle both these issues. It collects fresh, nutritious food that cannot be sold, including a high proportion of fresh fruit and vegetables, baked goods, salads, meat and fish. They collect or receive food from over 539 suppliers, including supermarkets, wholesalers, farms, restaurants and delis. including a high proportion of fresh fruit and vegetables, baked goods, salads, meat and fish.
The project was set up by Justin Byan Shaw who’s son Felix died suddenly from Meningitis in 2014. He says about the inspiration behind the project, “Felix was full of compassion for those without his advantages and, in early 2015, I was searching for a way to commemorate him. What stuck in my mind was a boys’ football tournament, he’d played in. Felix told me he’d been upset to learn that many of the 10-year-old boys on the opposing team hadn’t had anything to eat that day.” Out of this came The Felix Project’s ethos: no one should have to miss a meal. Every hour of time donated equates to 200 meals for Londoners.
As volunteers, we spent our day split between the warehouse and the kitchen. In the morning we donned steel-toe capped boots and hi vis jackets to work in the warehouse. Here we sorted deliveries that were coming in (including a surprising number of bananas!), donated by their supply partners, so that they were ready to go out to community organisations, schools and food banks.
In the afternoon we exchanged our jackets for aprons and some very stylish hair nets (no pictures please!), and went down to the kitchen. We were set to task peeling box after box of onions ready to be cooked for the meals that The Felix Project provides daily.
It was an absolute pleasure to volunteer for The Felix Project, and a huge thank you to LimeVenues for organising the day.
Find out more about The Felix Project, and how you and your team can help, here.