Reducing Food Poverty
Set up in 2001, Fareshare Dundee is one of 12 projects working in partnership with the national food charity FareShare to reduce food poverty in the UK.
Every day, homeless and vulnerable individuals receive nutritiously balanced meals, thanks to FareShare Dundee. The project collects/receives surplus quality food, including fresh fruit, vegetables, meat and dairy products from suppliers and retailers, such as Bartletts, Baxters, C J Lang, Greggs, Kettle Produce, and Nestle. The food, which would otherwise end up in landfill, is 'fit for purpose' but surplus due to packaging errors, over production or proximity to shelf life. FareShare redistributes these supplies, free of charge, to community organisations providing residential and day services for disadvantaged groups of people in Dundee, Perth & Kinross and Angus.
Not only does fareshare provide an essential service providing homeless and vulnerable individuals with nutritiously balanced meals but it also offers valuable training and volunteering opportunities to many of our service users as well as others in the community.
FareShare's work is mostly carried out by a team of volunteers, many of whom are hostel residents or former service users. The Volunteers undertake various tasks, including driving the vans to make collections and deliveries, loading and unloading the vehicles, stock control and ensuring the depot meets food hygiene standards. For many, FareShare provides them with a structured day along with meaningful activity. It helps them to establish more positive social networks, and provides opportunities to learn new skills, enhancing their employability.
- 52 community projects benifited from weekly/twice weekly food supplies.
- 101 tonnes of food contributed towards 1106 meals on a daily basis.
- 22 people received training/volunteer placements.
- 5406 hours of voluntary work was provided.
- 6 volunteers passed their forklift truck driving tests.
Fareshare has made a difference
Mike, manager of Dudhope Villa and Sister Properties, says how the food donations have made a difference to his project. "We provide supported accommodation for 60-70 vulnerable adults over the age of 18. We've been receiving provisions from FareShare for the past 2-3 years, probably saving £2-3,000 per annum. We use the provisions to improve service delivery. For example, provide fresh meat and vegetables along with a variety of soup and sweet dishes, hold barbeques, birthday parties and seasonal meals. Without this money our service users wouldn't have such an enhanced standard of living and certainly wouldn't have the quality of diet achieved and enjoyed through an imaginative use of ingredients. Wholly we can provide an even and staple diet for those who otherwise may not receive such nutritional meals."
Michael a long-term volunteer says
"FareShare's a big part of my life. I'm there nearly every day and really enjoy it - you're always kept busy. A few years ago, I was a bit of a toe-rag, but I'm completely different now. When we deliver food to homeless hostels, I feel like I'm helping other people that are in the same situation as I used to be".