Food & Wellbeing

Taking Action on Food Poverty

No comments

Greater Manchester Takes Action Together on Food Poverty

In the month since we launched the Food Poverty Action Plan, we have been meeting leaders, businesses, and charities to ask what they will do to make the plan a reality. The response has been very positive, with over 30 organisations covering most of Greater Manchester’s boroughs, making more than 70 pledges of action and funding. The pledges will be published when the new Food Poverty Alliance coordinator is in post, so far they include:

  • Salford City Council and the Salford Food Share Network pledging to better coordinate and strengthen food
    support services across the city, while giving advice to other localised food support networks
  • Wigan Council influencing education providers to teach good food on a tight budget, rolling out a nutrition and hydration training programme with Domiciliary Care Staff, and many other pledges
  • Kellogg’s supporting 100 school breakfast clubs in Greater Manchester with cash grants totalling £100,000,
    helping to feed at least 5000 children
  • The Roman Catholic Diocese of Salford contributing £2,500 towards the cost of employing a Food Poverty Alliance coordinator
  • Many smaller organisations pledging to take action however they can, such as setting up food pantries, becoming accrediting Real Living Wage employers, and developing toolkits to help people and organisations tackle food poverty where they are

These pledges show Greater Manchester’s resolve to take action on hunger, and more than that, it shows an understanding that through coordinated strategic action we can start to address the underlying causes and ultimately work to eradicate food poverty in our city region.

We are also working to raise funds for a full-time coordinator, so would welcome pledges of financial support such as that made by Salford Diocese. The coordinator will:

  • drive forward the recommendations in the Action Plan at the Greater Manchester level
  • work in-depth in some neighbourhoods to pilot place-based approaches to tackling food poverty
  • keep the Alliance working together and bringing out the best in Greater Manchester’s response to food poverty
Tom for GMFPA article for GM Poverty Action

Tom Skinner, Director of GMPA

Can you pledge to take action on food poverty by starting to implement one or more of the actions in the Plan? Please email food@gmpovertyaction.org with PLEDGE in the subject line

 

i3oz9sTaking Action on Food Poverty
read more

Understanding Food Poverty

No comments

Understanding Food Poverty and the Transitional Behaviour of Vulnerable Individuals

On Thursday April 25th, 2019 from 3.30 – 7pm at Media City UK, University of Salford M50 2HE

As almost a fifth of the UK population live in poverty and emergency food access is increasing year-on-year, our event reports on the temporal experience of austerity and food access exclusion in the Greater Manchester and city of Birmingham regions with the purpose of helping vulnerable individuals to navigate their way out of food poverty.

This event is hosted by SHUSU at the University of Salford, together with Huddersfield Business School and Birmingham Business School. Sponsored by British Academy/Leverhulme, it aims to bring together stakeholders across business, government, charities, academia and society to discuss key questions around food poverty and poverty in general.

In addition to disseminating their key findings and policy summaries from local government, the event features an open Q&A panel with leading thinkers from Greater Manchester Poverty Action, Joseph Rowntree Foundation, Birmingham Food Council and Salford City Council.

GMPA Co-Director Tom Skinner, who will be speaking at the event, commented “The Food Poverty Action Plan for Greater Manchester is centred around the need to address the underling causes of food poverty at the personal as well as societal level. This event is important as it will discuss and develop the evidence base for helping people to navigate their way out of food poverty.”

Conference Chairs: Prof. Morven McEachern; Dr Caroline Moraes; Prof. Lisa Scullion; and Dr Andrea Gibbons.

Refreshments are provided on arrival and midway through the event.

The event is free to attend but pre-registration is compulsory via Eventbrite.

 

i3oz9sUnderstanding Food Poverty
read more

Can you pledge?

No comments

 

More than 50 pledges have been made by people and organisations across Greater Manchester, to implement the recommended actions in the Food Poverty Action Plan. Here Mylo Kaye from the charity “Pledge” talks about action that he is taking to tackle food poverty. Can you pledge to take action on food poverty by starting to implement one or more of the actions in the Plan? Please read the Action Plan and email to tell us what you will do to make the Food Poverty Action Plan a reality.

From earth to table, how local allotment growing is feeding people in poverty

By Mylo Kaye, CEO of Pledge

On an allotment in Stretford, a group of friends led by Kal Gill-Faci are spending most weekends clearing, weeding and getting the ground ready to sow fruit and vegetables that will soon make their way to the tables of Greater Manchester people. This natural, healthy, nutritious food is helping to combat food poverty.

Pledge article for GM Poverty Action

Kal Gill-Faci delivers fresh produce to Reach out to the Community

Humphrey Park allotments are home to Pledge, a local charity helping people living in poverty. The charity, started last year is focused on ending poverty for those living across Greater Manchester.

For the past year, food grown has been harvested and donated to other local charities such as Cornerstone, The Longford Centre, Barnabus, Mustard Tree, Reach Out to the Community & The Globe Food Pantry. These partnerships are vital to the success of ‘Plot for Poverty’ and the initiative couldn’t happen without them.

Over 7,400 meals will have been delivered to hungry people across our region by the Autumn, and with the only cost being time, it’s a win-win for local people in need and the charities cooking the fresh food. Typical fruit and veg that is grown are things like Kale, Potatoes, Cauliflower, Onions and Grapes, plus many more. The food makes its way from earth to table in a matter of hours.

Local children are also actively involved in the growing. Education around food poverty amongst people who are homeless is essential, these young people are our leaders of tomorrow and we need them to get involved and make their own change.

Mylo Kaye article for GM Poverty Action

Mylo Kaye

Individuals, groups and allotments across Greater Manchester are encouraged to get involved to help end food poverty in the region, by either starting their own ‘Plot for Poverty’ or by offering time and resources to Pledge to maximise growing efforts in the run-up to the Autumn months.

We can all make a massive impact by finding intuitive ways to help people living in poverty, but we can only do this by working together.

You can see a video of the project here

 

i3oz9sCan you pledge?
read more

Launch of the Food Poverty Action Plan

No comments

GMFPA logo

Last week GMPA launched Greater Manchester’s first ever Food Poverty Action Plan to a packed hall in Manchester. The Action Plan was the culmination of 10 months work by over 100 people and organisations, which I have had the privilege of coordinating.

With over 600,000 people, including 200,000 children, living in poverty in Greater Manchester and food bank use higher in the city region than most other parts of the country, the plan calls for action by organisations across all sectors to help prevent people falling into poverty, and to support people relying on food handouts out of poverty through advice, support and signposting.Infographic2 GMFPA for GM Poverty Action

Andy Burnham at GMFPA APL for GM Poverty Action

GM Mayor Andy Burnham

Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester, who wrote the foreword for the Action Plan, spoke at the event and pledged that he would write to every public body in Greater Manchester, asking them to implement this plan at the local level.

To read the summary or full action plan please go to the GM Food Poverty Action Plan page

Panel at GMFPA APL for GM Poverty Action

Some of the chairs of the Food Poverty Alliance’s nine sub-groups took questions from the audience

 

 

 

 

 

Pledge 6 at GMFPA APL for GM Poverty Action

 

Among many other things, the action plan calls for:

  • A joined-up response on the ground – the provision of debt, welfare advice and other support alongside the provision of food handouts and support, so that people get the most appropriate help as quickly as possible;
  • More longer-term options for people in need of food support, such as food clubs, pantries and community grocers, to match the level of support provided for people in moments of crisis;GMFPA Inforgraphic 4 for GM Poverty Action
  • A lead for poverty to be appointed by the GM Combined Authority and each of Greater Manchester’s ten councils;
  • Schools to increase uptake of free school meals, and to work with local businesses and charities to run breakfast clubs, while supporting coordinated action on holiday hunger;
  • A campaign to increase uptake of Healthy Start Vouchers, an NHS scheme that supports parents on low incomes to buy healthy food for their young children. GMPA estimates around £3.6million worth of vouchers went unclaimed in Greater Manchester last year;GMFPA Infographic 5 for GM Poverty Action
  • Health services to expand social prescribing for healthy food-related activities such as cooking classes and food growing, and to work with charities and businesses to promote healthy food.

The full plan has more than 70 actions, including something for each organisation in every sector and every borough of Greater Manchester to do, to play their part in tackling food poverty. You can find both the summary and the full Action Plan (the more detailed full version will evolve as the plan is implemented, hence the more minimalist presentation) here, along with more information about the Food Poverty Alliance and how it has co-produced the Action Plan.

To continue coordinating the work of the Food Poverty Alliance, we also need to secure additional project funding and are asking organisations across Greater Manchester to pledge financial support to help us recruit a full-time project worker who will:

•  Drive forward the recommended actions in the Action Plan, working with partners and allies across all sectors and in all boroughs to encourage action and to provide support and advice;

•  Convene open meetings between all stakeholders who are taking action on food poverty, to encourage a joined-up response and evidence-based action;

•  Work with the food support sector (food banks, food clubs etc) to ensure provision matches people’s and
communities’ needs;

•  Ensure that food poverty action is joined up with other action on food.

A funding proposal and budget is available on request from food@gmpovertyaction.org.

Tom Skinner editorial article for GM Poverty Action

Tom Skinner, GMPA Director

With the plan launched, now we need to make it a reality, with joined-up efforts to reduce and prevent food poverty for thousands of people all across Greater Manchester. More than 50 pledges have already been made by people and organisations across Greater Manchester. Can you pledge to take action on food poverty by starting to implement one or more of the actions in the Plan? Please email food@gmpovertyaction.org

 

i3oz9sLaunch of the Food Poverty Action Plan
read more

Underlying Causes of Food Poverty

No comments

Addressing the underlying causes of food poverty
By Dr Mags Adams

Dr Mags Adams is Senior Research Co-ordinator at UCLAN’s Institute of Citizenship, Society and Change. She chaired one of the sub-groups of the Greater Manchester Food Poverty Alliance, which recommended actions for the Food Poverty Action Plan to address the underlying causes of food poverty. You can read the recommended actions, all of which were included in the Action Plan, and discuss them, here.

Food insecurity in the UK is on the rise as evidenced by the increased use of food banks across the country1 and the increasing number of deaths from malnutrition  (up by more than 30% between 2007 and 20162). At a time when Greater Manchester is performing well economically in terms of job creation and private sector business growth, low pay and low skills mean many people are not benefiting from the region’s success ; median full-time wages are £50 per week lower in Greater Manchester (£494) than they are nationally (£545), and 23% of workers are paid below the voluntary Living Wage3. Universal credit was piloted in Tameside in Greater Manchester before being rolled out to Oldham and further afield. It replaced six means tested benefits with one single payment. It has been highly criticised due to effects on housing rights, evictions and homelessness4. In October 2017 it was reported that 80% of claimants in some housing associations had fallen behind with rent because of delays in receiving their payments5. This new benefit has an inbuilt six-week delay in receiving payments, allegedly to mirror being paid monthly in the workplace (However, it should be noted than many of those earning under £10,000 per annum are actually paid weekly6). In reality delays of ten and twelve weeks are not uncommon before payments are received7.

Many additional factors are also at play in determining why people experience food poverty. For example, food prices fluctuate, the UK is a net importer of food8 and the fall in the pound since the EU referendum has pushed the cost of living upwards9. Furthermore, housing prices are disproportionately higher than in other European countries.

Child poverty in Manchester is one of the highest rates by local authority area; 35.5% of children under 16 live in poverty with 69.4% of them living in workless households10. Many people living in poverty are in part-time and low paid work.

Dr Mags Adams article for GM Poverty Action

Dr Mags Adams

By addressing the underlying causes of food poverty, we can ensure that everyone in Greater Manchester is food secure and has ‘adequate access at all times to sufficient, safe, nutritious food to maintain a healthy and active life’11. Many of the problems associated with food poverty, including hunger and malnutrition, are problems caused by poverty. Addressing this will mean that households have a real living wage for a decent quality of life, that homelessness becomes a thing of the past, that children can focus on their education rather than their hunger, and that everyone has an affordable place to live.

Mags is seeking people to apply for a fully-funded PhD on the topic of “Local food systems and local economic democracy: a framework for delivering food security?” Full details here

1 Bulman, M. (2018, 24 April). Food bank use in UK reaches highest rate on record as benefits fail to cover basic costs. Independent. Available here

2 British Specialist Nutrition Association (2018). Forgotten not Fixed: A Blueprint to Tackle  the Increasing Burden of Malnutrition in England. Available here

3 Joseph Rowntree Foundation (2017). 100-day countdown: Greater Manchester mayor must get to grips with region’s in-work poverty problem.  Available here

4 Greater Manchester Law Centre (2017). “We demand: no evictions as a result of Universal Credit delays” says GMLC, Disabled People Against the Cuts, Acorn tenants’ union and others. Available here

5 Williams, J. (2017, 19 Oct). Families are ‘being made homeless’ by Universal Credit – but its rollout will continue. Available here

6 Institute for Government (2017). The problems with Universal Credit. Available here

7 See Institute for Government (2017) above.

8 Gov.UK (2017). Food Statistics in your pocket 2017 – Global and UK supply. Available here

9 Jackson, G. (2017, 14 Nov). UK food prices rise at fastest rate in four years. Financial Times. Available here

10 Manchester City Council (2017). Manchester City Council Report for Resolution Manchester Family Poverty Strategy 2017-2022. Available here

11 World Food Programme (2018). What is food security? Available here

 

i3oz9sUnderlying Causes of Food Poverty
read more

Mental Health & UC

No comments

Investigating Claimant Experiences
By Joe Pardoe, PhD Student at the University of Salford

Research has shown that recent changes to the benefits system, especially the roll-out of Universal Credit, have profoundly impacted the UK’s poorest communities. This has been found to partly account for the massive increase in national rates of poverty, particularly child poverty. The link between poverty and health has long been established; a region with a high rate of poverty tends to correspond with a lower standard of general health and mental health.

My study is interested in how people who live within an area with a relatively high rate of poverty, such as Greater Manchester, may experience changes to their mental health throughout their engagement with the benefits system and receipt of Universal Credit. Claimants who are vulnerable to mental health related issues and mental health conditions, such as those who receive additional disability benefits like PIP, often see their need for support intensified throughout the process of engagement with the benefits system. What is less well known is, how those without pre-existing mental health conditions may experience changes to their mental health throughout the process of claiming.

Prior research has identified various aspects of claiming that may impact upon mental health, such as being subject to the Work Capability Assessment and having to deal with the rigors of meeting conditionality measures to avoid being sanctioned. However, while I am interested to talk about these kinds of issues, I am particularly keen to allow individuals themselves to identify what aspects of claiming Universal Credit may have affected changes to their mental health.

I aim to interview 30 people who have reported changes to their mental health throughout the process of claiming; this may include those with pre-existing mental health conditions, or those who have mentioned experiencing mental health related issues since starting to claim. I am interested to hear from anybody who lives within Greater Manchester and is open to discuss this topic by drawing upon their personal experiences.

The study will explore perceived changes to mental health at various stages of claiming Universal Credit, with a specific focus on:

•  The financial impact

•  What aspects of claiming Universal Credit may be seen as helping, or being unhelpful, to sustaining a
good standard of mental health

•  Possible issues around meeting conditionality measures, including in-work

•  How people claiming Universal Credit may feel they are seen by others; both their friends and family, and
by wider society

Joe Pardoe PhD student article for GM Poverty Action

Joe Pardoe

In order to support this study, I would be very grateful to hear from anybody whose job involves providing some kind of support to people who receive Universal Credit and have experienced changes to their mental health and may be open to being interviewed to discuss their experiences. If you are able to support my research or would like to find out more, please contact me via email

 

Joe is studying for his PhD within the School of Health and Society at the University of Salford , he is associated with the Sustainable Housing and Urban Studies Unit and supporting the Salford Anti-Poverty Task Force. He gained a 1st Class honours degree in Psychology at the University of Bradford.

 

i3oz9sMental Health & UC
read more

Holiday Hunger

No comments

A Snapshot of Activities and Food Provision in Greater Manchester

Children and young people who rely on school meals during term time, often struggle to be well fed during school holidays. If there is not enough food at home, hunger can be especially acute at these times, which can be socially isolating and detrimental to physical and mental health.

This is a growing concern – 59% of respondents to a National Education Union survey said that children in their school experienced holiday hunger. Of these, 51% said in 2018 that the situation has got worse in the last three years.

While the long-term solutions to food poverty lie in increasing incomes and making good food affordable and accessible for everyone, this is a crisis that must be addressed now. I can give you a preview of a relevant section of our Food Poverty Action Plan that will be launched on Monday March 4th (please book your place here if you haven’t already). Along with many recommendations and actions to address the underlying causes of food poverty, the Action Plan recommends that leaders and systems across Greater Manchester should work together to:

  • Develop and implement a Greater Manchester-wide framework for the provision of healthy and sustainable meals for children and young people, during both term times and holidays, with reference to the school food standard
  • All 10 boroughs to support and coordinate holiday provision with food. Coordinate a Greater Manchester approach to access to food during the summer holidays, encouraging schools to improve access to facilities and kitchens. e.g.◦ Coordinate bids for funding from the Department for Education◦  Develop a toolkit for holiday provision with food, including how to navigate safeguarding issues that may arise◦  Sharing and replicating approaches and models such as Holiday Hunger in Wigan◦  Holiday Kitchen type clubs with food focused activities, working with partners to make best use of Children’s Centres where facilities are available

The government has shown some signs that it may be willing to take responsibility for the issue, with the Department for Education commissioning some pilot projects this year. Specifically there is a total of £9m available for “testing the coordination of free holiday provision (including healthy food and enriching activities) for disadvantaged children during the 2019 summer holidays in up to 9 upper-tier local authorities. The aims of this grant programme are to develop a more efficient and joined-up approach to free holiday provision for disadvantaged children; and to ensure there is enough good quality free holiday provision to meet the demand from children eligible for free school meals (FSM) in the local authority during the 2019 summer holidays.” The bidding process closes on February 7th.

GMPA are encouraging and offering to support bids from across Greater Manchester. To that end, today we publish analysis of a survey that we ran along with Greater Together Manchester last year to get a snapshot of some of the provision during school holidays across Greater Manchester – please download that analysis here, and use it to inform your preparation and activities with children and young people during school holidays.

Good practice suggests that in order to reduce the stigma associated with projects that aims to reduce food poverty, any project or service should be focused on the provision of activities that are accompanied by food, and that the project or service should be open to anyone.

We asked the respondents whether they provided activities in addition to food and 19 of the respondents said that they did. When asked for further details, they cited a number of different activities as shown below:

Holiday Hunger graphic for GM Poverty Action

An excerpt from the survey analysis

Tom Skinner editorial article for GM Poverty Action

Tom Skinner, GMPA Director

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

i3oz9sHoliday Hunger
read more

Feeding the city

No comments

Feeding the City: Greater Manchester

Saturday January 19th, 2019

The Food Poverty Action Plan for Greater Manchester will propose many actions for businesses seeking to benefit and improve access to good food in their local communities,so it is great timing to be able to share this opportunity.

Impact Hub are putting on a free workshop to help you develop ideas for sustainable food businesses to benefit your local community. Funding, training and advice will be available for new businesses through the Feeding the City program, and this workshop will help you to develop your ideas, ready to apply for this funding – please note that the deadline for funding applications following the workshop is Sunday January 27th, 2019.

When: 1:30pm – 5pm, Saturday January 19th 2019

Where:
 Bridge 5 Mill, 22A Beswick Street, Manchester, M4 7HR

How to book: Places are limited, so please book for free using this link

Our city region is growing and we’re struggling to feed ourselves sustainably. We want to support you to make change! What food problems would you like to solve for your community?

Do you play with the idea of starting a social business, or already have an idea in mind?

Feeding the City is a fully funded 12 month programme that will support sustainable food start-ups across all of the UK. Successful applicants will receive bursaries, and have access to business and food expert advice and training throughout 2019. At this Idea-Generating Workshop you will be supported to develop an idea for your own social business, get to know others working in similar areas and have a chance to learn more about Feeding the City. Using concrete tools, you will be helped to think through important elements of your idea in a structured way and to identify blind spots. Furthermore, you will receive valuable feedback and also learn which criteria are important in the funding application. Even those who have no concrete or only a vague idea are welcome.

Please note, any queries about the Feeding the City program should be directed to Impact Hub, while you can find out more about the Greater Manchester workshop through the booking form.

 

i3oz9sFeeding the city
read more

End Hunger UK – Conference 2018

No comments

A growing movement? End Hunger UK conference 2018
By Dr Charlie Spring, University of Sheffield

On World Food Day 2018, the End Hunger UK campaign convened its second annual conference in Westminster to discuss the growing movement around household food insecurity in the UK. A broad coalition of food aid providers, think tanks, faith leaders, researchers, local authorities, artists and diverse experts by experience, End Hunger represents a national effort to galvanise public and policy attention to evidently large numbers of people struggling to afford adequate food. We don’t know how large; one panel discussed the ongoing Bill to measure food insecurity nationally via the ONS Living Costs and Food Survey. It is hoped such monitoring would give a more robust sense of the scale and severity of UK food poverty, to be tracked against changes including Universal Credit rollout and Brexit.

Power of stories and frames

A key theme of the day, however, was the power of stories and images over stats in capturing public and policy attention to food poverty, its causes and solutions. A collaborative photo exhibition, ‘Behind Closed Doors’, has toured the UK with portraits and research into experiences of food insecurity, some displayed at the conference and ending in the House of Commons. We heard young poets recite moving submissions to a recent poetry competition. The Food Foundation are collecting submissions of lived experiences towards their Children’s Future Food Inquiry, while the Independent Food Aid Network (IFAN) aim to build an online Story Bank of lived experiences of food insecurity.

A panel led by Church Action on Poverty reported research by JRF and the FrameWorks Institute into effective ways to shift public discourse about poverty. Countering individualising, blame-and-shame accounts requires keying into commonly-held beliefs about the injustice of poverty and government’s responsibility to protect against it, using well-chosen examples and stories rather than relying on numbers alone.

Whose problem?

Coordinated by Sustain’s Food Power programme, partnership structures such as the Greater Manchester Food Poverty Alliance have been forming around the UK to ask how food poverty might be addressed at local and regional levels. The End Hunger UK gathering therefore required us to think about scales of responsibility for preventing poverty. I heard discussions about how local networks of food banks might better share their food supplies as demand increases. It was encouraging to hear food bank leaders discuss exit strategies over the next few years, and we must help them to realise these goals as my research shows how difficult this has been in the US and Canada

Some alliances expressed frustration at local authorities producing poverty strategies yet lacking any funds to turn aims into actions. Public health workers have conducted needs assessments and written proposals that end up ignored by senior colleagues. Yet, affecting national government and company policies that affect benefit and wage levels felt too tough a goal for many of the local alliances I spoke to. End Hunger UK, then, provides one lens through which to target a palpable collective anger. Another potential shared voice was offered by the school students of Blackburn and Darwen who have been organising as part of Food Power’s efforts to involve experts by experience in campaigning. The girls, who shared their stories for a short film, are launching a campaign Darwen Gets Hangry, which they hope will encourage others to turn their own experiences of shame and guilt about being food-poor- or ‘hangry’- into something collective and targeted that can spread to other parts of the UK.

Food Power Conference report by Charlie Spring for GM Poverty Action

Charlie Spring

The girls shared a panel with a group of asylum seekers from Luton who are also part of End Hunger UK, who formed a growing group after seeking Red Cross food parcels and now cook their produce as community meals. One lady, still seeking asylum after 16 years, told us she understands why some of the families she meets spend their money on drugs, even before food; they don’t have enough love, she said, or motivation and opportunities. Her expression of shared purpose with the Darwen girls to counter government indifference, gave a hopeful sense that the divisive forces of Brexit and far-right populism might be countered by intersectional
struggles of solidarity against the erosion of public entitlements and the human right to decent food.

This is an abridged version of an article that Charlie wrote for the Realising Just Cities blog – you can see the full version here

 

i3oz9sEnd Hunger UK – Conference 2018
read more

Your Local Pantry

No comments

“It’s more than just a full tummy, it’s a massive link in the community”
Stockport Homes Pantry article for GM Poverty Action

Stockport Homes opened the doors to its first pantry in 2014. This was a time of welfare reform and the surge in food bank vouchers allocated in Stockport made it apparent that there needed to be another option available, one that would help and support people before they reached crisis point.  It was hoped that the pantry model could help relieve financial pressure in people’s lives, and be a sustainable resource that would bring communities together.

Stockport Homes Pantry article for GM Poverty Action The pantry is a volunteer led, community food resource with local residents signing up as members and paying a small weekly subscription fee (£3.50 in Stockport). In return for this, members can visit the pantry once a week and select their own items from a wide variety of goods. This includes chilled, frozen, dairy, fresh meat and fish, fresh fruit and veg and all the usual store cupboard favourites. These items are often worth in excess of £15.00 at retail value.

The ethos of the pantry is to offer dignity and choice:
•  Offers a hand up not a hand down – we are not a foodbank or crisis provision, we aim to prevent people from reaching this point.

•  Provide access to holistic, wrap around support linked to areas such as money advice, housing, health and employment and skills

•  Community led – members and volunteers keep our shelves stocked and our pantries open and as such must be at the heart of pantry development empowering themselves and their local communities by co-running their own Pantries.

•  The volunteer scheme supports people back in to paid employment

Stockport Homes Pantry article for GM Poverty Action

Stockport Homes Brinnington Pantry.

All money raised is reinvested straight back in to the project, paying for the day-to-day costs as well as raising a small surplus. This surplus allows the pantry to buy additional stock and essential equipment where required. The majority of our stock comes from FareShare, a national charity who redistribute surplus stock from large supermarkets and food manufacturers to projects like ourselves.

As at September 2018, four pantries were open in Stockport, with a further one scheduled before the end of the financial year.

The pantry network has a significant impact on local communities, with 9266 individual visits to the four pantries in 2017/2018 generating a collective saving of £115,825.

Its 25-30 strong group of volunteers from the local community and Stockport Homes’ staff have donated 4,735 hours during 2017-2018, covering everything from the cash office, supporting customers with their pantry shopping, behind the scenes administration and receiving/sorting deliveries.

Many other social landlords and community groups are now interested in replicating our model through the Your Local Pantry social franchise. Over 30 pantry style schemes are now operating in Greater Manchester with many more coming on board from across the UK.

The package includes help and support setting up from a dedicated officer, bespoke software, volunteer hand book and a full operations guide. To find out more about this exciting opportunity contact Anna Jones  0161 474 4760

Church Action on Poverty (CAP) manage the social franchise on behalf of Stockport Homes, to help people to set up community cooperative food stores nationwide. To discuss what is included in the package of support and costs, please contact CAP via laura@church-poverty.org.uk or telephone 0161 872-9294.

For more information about all food providers across Greater Manchester please visit GMPA’s map.

 

i3oz9sYour Local Pantry
read more