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.

One Year On

In the past year we have:

Impact information – In the last year April 20 – April 21 we have;

  • Diverted 10,450KG of food from landfill and used it to feed our local community instead
  • Provided food and supported 6,867 individuals
  • Provided 40,466 meals into the community (including ready-made meals prepared by the Pantry)
  • 32 Volunteers involved in the Pantry over the year
  • Approx 4,992 Volunteer hours involved in the delivery of the Pantry over the year
  • Over 120 households signed up to the Pantry

 

What our members and volunteers say

“So many people struggling just now and on low income or being furloughed that the pantry helps us all in the community with good affordable food”

“As much as it saddens me to say but with volunteering at the pantry last week and giving out 170 bags of food in the community then that is proof that we need the pantry in our area”

“I think that the Pantry is a great idea as it reduces food waste, allows people to make meals from ingredients provided at a low cost from the pantry and is also a social space for people to come together”

“The Pantry has been a lifeline for me and my family and not just for the food but being able to speak to someone, thank you”

“Without the pantry, some people in our area would be going without food, kids being hungry (as there only source of meal was School dinners) We are lucky to have pantry in our area”

“For some of us going to the pantry is the only time that we are out the house and seeing/meeting people adhering to social distancing of course………you always get a wee blether and a friendly face at the pantry”

” It’s not charity and removes that stumbling block that the foodbank brings”

“it’s been a god send and encourages me to cook more meals but it would help to have more ideas on what i could cook and cheaply”

100% of Pantry members/volunteers said that there is a need for the Pantry within the Community as there is a mixture of people unemployed /on low income/families struggling to budget/food poverty/elderly and people isolating that rely heavily on this service.

Collections can be booked only on a Thursday from Brag 1pm – 3pm with deliveries taking place on a Friday from 1pm to those most vulnerable.

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

Or to buy supplies from our amazon wish list 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.

We asked our members what they would like to see in the future

93% of people would like to see a more social setting/tea/coffee bar/meeting place where they enjoy a tea/coffee and put funds back into the pantry.  Also, social interaction taking place, making new friends, support networks, increasing social and emotional wellbeing.

76% of people would like to see more food education/cooking sessions with local people, people would like to see recipes (online or in food bags) on how to cook with ingredients/food from the pantry, they would like cooking demonstrations/cooking on a budget ideas, they would like more support around Healthy Eating and avoiding 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.