6 December 2018
Sandale Trust is a community centre in Bradford. It runs a youth club for children and young people, events for children and families, provides benefits advice and support, as well as a community café, an older people’s drop in centre, lunch club and meals on wheels service.
The charity receives a weekly food delivery from FareShare, which is then transformed into a hearty three course meal for the older people who use the drop in service. Manager Marie Doherty, says: “We have a core group of twelve older people who all have lunch together in the week. They’ll get a soup, a traditional dinner – with meat and two veg, and something sweet for dessert.”
The team then package up any remaining food and distribute it to families in need. “It’s a very deprived area,” Marie explains. “There’s a lot of poverty. Some of these kids rarely leave the estate they’re born on. We feed about twenty families a week, and some of them have four or five kids, so they’re really stretched. Because of FareShare we’re able to give out a lot of fruit and veg, which these families might not be able to afford otherwise.”
For those facing financial hardship or living alone, winter can be tough. That’s why the centre run a series of events over the Christmas period. “We hold an alternative Christmas Day on the 23rd December, with a full roast and a carol service, for those families and older people who might be on their own this year. When they come here, it’s like they’re with family. We’re also fundraising to buy gifts for local children. Some kids wouldn’t get anything otherwise, so we buy age-appropriate gifts and then they’ll have the excitement of unwrapping a new toy on Christmas day.”
“We hold an alternative Christmas Day with a full roast and a carol service, for those families and older people who might be on their own this year. When they come here, it’s like they’re with family.”