National charity FoodCycle will open its 4th free weekly community meal in Mansfield next month and is in urgent need of volunteers.
Launching FoodCycle Mansfield on 11th March, the charity is on the lookout for local residents to help conjure up a warm meal and welcoming atmosphere every Monday from 4pm. Local volunteers will get to experience the ‘FoodCycle magic’ - transforming surplus food into delicious vegetarian dishes alongside a friendly chat to anyone in the community who fancies coming along every week.
To sign up to volunteer and help nourish their local community, Mansfield locals can simply visit the FoodCycle website and follow a few simple steps.
FoodCycle East Midlands Regional Manager Martha Skinner says: ”It’s truly heartening to be able to offer more people across the East Midlands free weekly community meals and a safe, welcoming space for anyone who comes along no questions asked. Guests will be able to share tasty food made with ingredients saved from landfill and enjoy a chat with a hot drink served by other members of their community. Our meals run on the kindness of volunteers, so we’re asking residents local to Mansfield and surrounding areas willing to give up a few hours each week to get in touch with us.”
FoodCycle Needs You
FoodCycle is looking to recruit new volunteers at FoodCycle Mansfield. Flexible volunteer roles without a minimum time commitment are open to anyone and include pot washers, cooking, hosting and running Projects.
Whether you’re a food waste warrior, a whizz in the kitchen, a keen washer-upper, a tea-making machine or a professional chatterbox who can’t wait to have a natter with guests, volunteering with FoodCycle is heaps of fun and doesn’t require any existing skills.
Chris, a long-term FoodCycle volunteer says: “It’s always lovely to see the smile on guests faces and the warm, welcoming atmosphere of our community meals. But also the energy and enthusiasm of our volunteers as we push ourselves to create and serve restaurant-quality meals. I've also learnt that there are pretty much no limits to the diversity of vegetarian food - we've hardly repeated dishes in my six years of volunteering!”
Without volunteers, FoodCycle cannot provide a vital service to the community who have come to rely on the chance to sit down to a free, three-course meal every week. Particularly as the cost-of-living crisis will continue this winter with everything from heating bills and food costs at an all-time high.
Executive Mayor of Mansfield Andy Abrahams added: “I am thrilled to see the FoodCycle project coming to Mansfield in a few weeks’ time. Having a warm, hearty meal with no questions asked while building links with your community and reducing food waste can only be a good thing for Mansfield.
“The volunteering opportunities available are also important. Whether you are still at school and looking for your first insight into work or looking for ways in which you can be an active member of your community, There are a range of roles available, and just a few hours a week of your time are required.
“I look forward to seeing the initiative grow and would like to thank FoodCycle for choosing Mansfield as their destination to open their fourth hub.”
Why do communities need projects like FoodCycle?
FoodCycle carried out a survey in December 2023 with 1448 guests which revealed that almost half (44%) eat most meals alone and 72% admit to feeling lonely. The survey underpins the need for services which tackle the UK’s loneliness pandemic by forging positive connection in local communities. The results suggest that FoodCycle’s community meals model works – with 92% of the guests surveyed leaving weekly meals feeling happier, 88% feeling more part of their community and 84% feeling less lonely.
FoodCycle Mansfield will open on 11th March and take place every Monday at 4pm at The Salvation Army, Victoria Street, Mansfield, NG18 5SB
Other FoodCycle East Midlands Projects:
FoodCycle Nottingham Broxtowe-Aspley every Tuesday at 6pm Woven St Martha's Church and Hope Centre, 137-139 Frinton Rd, Nottingham, NG8 6GR
FoodCycle Sutton-in-Ashfield every Wednesday from 6pm at The Magdalene Centre, Church Avenue, Sutton-in-Ashfield, NG17 2EB
FoodCycle Hucknall every Sunday from 1pm at Central Methodist Church, Baker Street, Hucknall, Nottingham, NG15 7AS
Press release published on behalf of FoodCycle