Updated: Apr 28
Back in December of 2020, Millennium Community Solutions partnered with Healthy Living Platform in order to deliver our newest initiative: The Southwyck Pantry!
Southwyck Pantry operates via a membership based model; members will have the opportunity to buy up to ten items for just £5, with another ten items available from surplus food donations.
The Pantry is inspired by the Co-operation Town food co-op model. Giving our members the opportunity to pick and choose which items they would like to buy reintroduces autonomy and represents the return of independence to service users who may not be comfortable accepting free food donations or attending a food bank.
Some of the members are also volunteering to run the Pantry, we are hoping this will be the start of a group of people who will run the project similar to a co-operative. The residents are already choosing what food we buy in – favourites are okra, yams, plantain and sweet potatoes.
One pantry member said the Pantry "helps with the day to day of having not to worry about a decent daily meal."
Another commented that "I can now afford to eat fresh food (and) I can better pay my bills."
Pantry co-ordinator Penny said "It’s been wonderful to see the members enthusiasm for the Pantry and hear about how it has benefitted them. I have had individuals tell me that they have started cooking for themselves again now that they have access to fresh foods. I think this one of the many things that makes the pantry so valuable.”
The project is possible due to the National Lottery Community Fund who have made substantial donations to the organisation via Millennium Community Solutions. Together we have been able to provide over 20,000 food parcels and over 5,000 hot meals in the year since Healthy Living Platform took over Southwyck House Community Hall!
Shop opening hours are 10AM – 4PM every Friday at Southwyck House Community Hall, Moorland Road, SW9 8UR.
*Quotes & figures from Healthy Living Platform.