staff making up emergency food parcels

The Emergency Response

At the outset of the COVID-19 crisis BRAG’s Levenmouth teams stepped in to help Fife Voluntary Action and Fife Council with their Coronavirus emergency response, delivering food parcels to those in need in the Levenmouth area. During this time based at The People’s Pantry in Leven the team were inspired by the emergency response but were also impressed with the ongoing pantry initiative that had been launched in 2018. Boasting 200 regular members with an additional waiting list the team soon realised that the Benarty area would also benefit greatly from creating a similar model and set about setting one up in its home town.

Launched within ten days from conception to doors opening the pantry@brag is now providing free emergency food parcels to residents in need across the Benarty (Lochore, Ballingry, Glencraig and Crosshill) area of Fife. This initiative has been jointly funded by The National Lottery Community Fund through Awards for All , Benarty Community Forum, Fife Council , Coalfields Regeneration Trust, Foundation Scotland and the Scottish Government’s Response, Recovery and Resilience Fund. We have also had help from several local businesses such as Baynes the Bakers, Benarty Carpets and Flooring and Scotstar Resin Flooring who have all stepped in to assist in the set up. It’s also important not to forget the fantastic Muffin Man who is a tenant at Crosshill who has helped us make ready meals and recipe kits for our members to make at home. He is also helping us to create some instructional videos that you can find here.
A walk-in service is now available to members every Thursday from 1pm until 3pm at our Crosshill Community Enterprise Centre with deliveries to housebound residents taking place every Friday. There is currently no membership fee to become a member of the pantry@brag.

If you would like to donate to the pantry please click here.

To volunteer at the pantry please click here.

The Future

The pantry will continue long after the Coronavirus crisis ends. There is an increasing need for community led food initiatives as an estimated 8.4 million people are living in food poverty in the United Kingdom today. The pantry model offers a community led approach – run by volunteers and works on a weekly membership basis. For a small fee (approx. £2 -£3 per week) members can have their choice of affordable food from the pantry provided by the charity Fare Share along with donations from other local suppliers.

Fare Share’s ethos relies on the principle that no good food should go to waste. They supply community led food initiatives all over the United Kingdom with surplus food from supermarkets. In this way they ensure a greener approach to preventing both hunger and unnecessary food waste.

Pantry members can also register to become volunteers and so can build connections to combat social isolation, improve mental health and gain essential team working skills.

 

To register as a member simply call us on 01592 860296 Mon to Fri 10am to 3pm or email us at enquiries@brag.co.uk.