27 February 2018
Moorland Star is a community centre for older people which helps to make later life a fulfilling and enjoyable experience for people living in the Splott, Tremorfa and Pengam Green area of Cardiff.
Splott is identified as a Communities First area and is in the top 10% of deprivation according to the Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation. Dorothy Templeman, Community Centre Manager at Moorland Star explains: “Just over seventeen years ago, a group of volunteers who originally came from the Splott and Tremorfa area of Cardiff recognised a need for the elderly people to come together for a hot meal and to socially interact each month. We knew that many of the elderly people did not see anyone for days at a time and they needed to integrate and feel part of the community they had been living in for so many years. Our aims are to make a difference to the community by providing anyone over the age of fifty the provision of a daily fresh cooked meal, the comfort of our surroundings and our friendship.”
The foundation of Moorland Star lies in their meals service, which remains the main core provision of the charity’s support package to older members of their community. Dorothy explains: “Since taking the premises over we have seen an overwhelming need for our service and our centre provides a daily lunch for the over fifties. Our fresh food is relished and we see an average of thirty people each day attending. The healthy food we provide ensures a healthier lifestyle for our users and benefits many people who could not otherwise afford a daily cooked meal.”
The charity has been receiving food from FareShare for two years, which they use every day as a core part of their meals service. Dorothy says: “The food we receive from FareShare has made a massive difference to the quality, quantity and price of the food we serve. Before we had FareShare we were buying food from the supermarkets and our local butcher which would cost us around £300 per week. FareShare has saved us a significant amount of money on our food bills compared to that. They offer an amazing service which is vital in supporting our core operation; it makes such a big difference.”
“For most of us this is our main meal for the day, without it we’d all be lost. I can’t cook. When I’m at home I live on sandwiches and sausage rolls, anything easy. My wife is in a home and the others have all lost their wives, so we’re all on our own really.” – Fred
Moorland bases its menus around the food from FareShare, altering and changing menus to make best use of the often short-dated surplus food that they receive. Favourite meals for their older clients include roast pork dinners, steak pies with vegetables, chicken Provencal salads and sausage and mash – all made with core ingredients provided by FareShare. Alongside their core meal provision, Moorland Star make best use of facilities to provide a range of community activities such as Bingo, Zumba and seasonal celebrations for Christmas, St Valentine’s Day, St Davids Day and The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
Many of the older people who attend Moorland Star have been doing so for many years. The centre is focused on providing a safe, secure environment for elderly people, and most importantly making them feel like a valued part of their local community. Dorothy notes that: “We have worked for over seventeen years with our core attendees and know what they want because they tell us! We listen and try to provide what they want. We are passionate about our community and want to maintain a community spirit that has evaporated in other areas.”
“I come here for the food and the company. All of these people are familiar faces and the volunteers are so nice!”- Sheila
Moorland Star community centre receives food from FareShare Cymru, based on the outskirts of Cardiff and working with charities and community organisations across South East Wales. Volunteers are key to FareShare Cymru’s success and new people are always welcome. If you would like to volunteer to help alleviate food poverty and food waste in the region, click here.