The increasing cost of living is having a huge impact on everyone but most painfully on those from deprived communities. Many of those individuals suffering economic inequality are residing in SSJ properties or are accessing one or more of the other services that we offer here at The Society of St James. In response, we launched James’ Pantry in Southampton to see what would happen!
We collect surplus food donations from across our geography and mainly from The Big Difference and make them available, for free, to the Society of St James residents and service users.
It was so successful that we launched one in Portsmouth earlier this month!
Our Portsmouth residents and service users can now visit us and get nutritious food for free.
Lexi, our Recovery Hub Team Leader says ‘It has come at a perfect time for Portsmouth, as more Food Banks are facing their own pressures; increasing their criteria for eligibility and reducing the opening hours. We are able to support clients and promote a healthy and varied diet, to aid their recovery’.
‘It’s really good quality food and having the fresh meat and vegetables makes a change’ – a service user said this to a colleague this week!
Service Users and Residents can also access our SSJ Academy “Eat Good, Feel Good” course where they can learn about food hygiene, eating for cheap, balancing their diet, kitchen safety, weekly budgeting and most importantly, how to cook what they collect from the pantry! For those who want to they can also take the Food Hygiene Level 1 qualification to help improve employment opportunities.
The Society of St James Food Pantry is made possible by the generous donations of local businesses, organisations, and individuals who share our vision of a more compassionate and inclusive society. We are always looking for more partners and supporters who can help us with food supplies, funding, or volunteering.
If you would like to help by volunteering at James’ Pantry, donating food or cash to support growth then please contact us here.
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