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Better food and big savings for the SMART Prebend Centre

Today we attended the launch of the South Midlands Regional Fareshare Centre, in partnership with Sofea Didcot. Working together Sofea Didcot and Fareshare provide charities with surplus food from retailers, which would otherwise be wasted.

Sofea and Fareshare have helped to cut the SMART Prebend Centre’s food costs in half, as well as enabling our chef to offer nutritional meals those who use our service.

We were delighted to be asked to speak at the event; to explain how big an impact the scheme is making at the centre.

Watch a report by ITV News and read more below once you are finished!

About SMART Prebend Centre and food

The centre does not receive any government or local council funding therefore the team are always looking for the support of partners such as Fareshare.

Pictured below: Nikki Little and Cassie Robus promoting the centre at the depot launch.

Lisa Harrison – SMART CJS Area Manager said:

“Traditionally we have relied on donations to run the centre. Whilst we are very thankful to have great support from the local community, where we get lots of tinned and dry goods, particularly during the harvest and winter periods, this doesn’t meet our full food requirements.

“To ensure that we have both enough food and food of good nutritional quality, we regularly have to supplement what we get in donations with brought items. Poor diet is one of the biggest health problems faced by those who are homeless or rough sleep.

“We have been a member of Fareshare Go, receiving collections from local supermarkets each week of food that they would otherwise throw away for approximately 18months and since February we began receiving food donations directly from Fareshare, originally opting to receive 50kg per week, but very quickly increasing this to 100kg weekly. Fairshare’s support hasn’t only had a positive financial implication for us; having Fareshare has dramatically increased the range of food items we are able to serve our service users. Meat and vegetables were always a real problem for us.”

Pictured below from left to right: Cassie Robus – SMART Milton Keynes Deputy Manager; Nikki Little – SMART Bedford Deputy Manager; James Whitcomb – SMART Business Development and Communications Manager; Bernard Grenville – Jones – Sofea Trustee; Joe – Sofea; Richard Kennell – Sofea CEO.

Richard Kennell – CEO of Sofea said: “We are delighted to be able to provide good quality surplus food to charities such as SMART, so they can improve the nutrition of their clients and reduce their food costs.”

More about the SMART Prebend Centre.

More about Sofea.

More about Fareshare.

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