Fri 03 July 2020
One Knowsley is leading a new collaboration of community organisations, social enterprise and independent business who want to make a difference in the community by enabling access to fresh food for everyone.
Knowsley Kitchen was inspired by a discussion between Lucy Antal (Alchemic Kitchen) and Dave Critchley (executive chef at Lu Ban, and founder of Liverpool Independent Delivery Service). This Knowsley enterprise and Knowsley resident have come together with local organisations to build upon the appetite within the voluntary, community and faith sector in Knowsley to build a sustainable food network and respond to communities during Covid-19 and beyond.
Access to fresh food, especially fruit and vegetables, can be an issue for many Knowsley residents in “normal” times, the Covid-19 crisis has exacerbated this. This is not always due to financial constraints, there’s a lack of a fresh food infrastructure generally in the borough.
Based on mutual aid, Knowsley Kitchen have successfully been delivering boxes of fresh, seasonal produce to residents of Knowsley, along with a loaf of freshly baked bread from fellow social enterprise Homebaked Anfield. As Knowsley Kitchen continues to develop, their intentions include: educational projects, recipes and so much more. The definitive aim is to address the current and long-term problem of access to fresh food, whilst reducing food waste and improving health outcomes.
All money donated to Knowsley Kitchen and from sales of fresh local produce are being used to make additional boxes, available to support households who need a little extra help at this point in time. This is about beautiful food, nourishing communities and building a sustainable, educational and delicious approach to enjoying food within, and across, all our communities in Knowsley.
Racheal Jones, Chief Executive Officer at One Knowsley, said: “We are delighted to be leading this innovative partnership. Knowsley Kitchen is a brilliant example to show the power of what we can achieve when we collaborate together. Knowsley Kitchen is helping hundreds of Knowsley residents and brings a different offer of support to our local communities” Dave Critchley, executive chef at Lu Ban, and founder of Liverpool Independent Delivery Service, said: “After 21 years working in the food scene in Liverpool, health issues relating to lack of good, nutritious food are very close to my heart. Working with these amazing partners has enabled me to make a difference and I dream of helping to create a more sustainable and fair food culture amongst the communities in this area.” Lucy Antal, Project Manager for Feedback’s Regional Food Economy NW project and founder of Alchemic Kitchen, said: “We are united in our concern for the health and wellbeing of local citizens and are adamant that Knowsley Kitchen is not a band-aid for the duration of the Covid-19 crisis but is the foundation of a new food system for Knowsley. Access to real food for all.”
Gary See, Trustee at Torrington Drive Community Association (TDCA), said: "We've had a really good response from the Halewood community to this initiative, and everyone's very appreciative. Knowsley Kitchen has given us the opportunity to work alongside key partners from the voluntary and private sectors, enabling us to support each other and our community during this difficult time. We are proud to be a partner and look forward to building on the success so far.”
The Revd Canon Malcolm Rogers MBE, Vicar of Huyton Quarry, Area Dean of Huyton and The Bishop of Liverpool's Canon For Reconciliation said: "Knowsley Kitchen is a remarkable coming together of longstanding community organisations from around the borough, focused entirely on the wellbeing of local people. Volunteers from the organisations involved distribute the food, connections which also lead to conversations. These are just as important as the food itself. Under the leadership of One Knowsley, St Gabriel's is proud to be a founding partner of Knowsley Kitchen and I couldn't commend it more in terms of what it does, how it does it and the difference it makes."
Pam Bowes, Scheme Manager at Home-Start Knowsley, said: “Families who have benefited from this initiative are so very grateful and Home-Start Knowsley are extremely proud to be part of this project.”
Knowsley Kitchen has already delivered 551 fresh food boxes to Knowsley households during the ongoing Covid-19 period. To learn more about Knowsley Kitchen or to pay it forward and donate to their scheme to support access to fresh food across Knowsley, visit www.oneknowsley.org/knowsley-kitchen/.
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