This week I had a meeting with the lovely Christopher from FareShare to discuss the relationship between our organisations and how it will be shaped in the future.
Fare Share is a franchised service which collects good food which might otherwise end up as landfill, sorts it and distributes it to charities and community organisations. such as Souper Saturday, who turn it into yummy meals for vulnerable people.
In Edinburgh the franchise is run by the Cyrenians Good Food Prgramme which, as well as FareShare, provides food training and employability support including an excellent supported volunteer programme which has inspired Souper Saturday’s moves into providing volunteering opportunities for people with support needs.
The meeting went well and I left feeling that FareShare and Good Food have the best interests of their members in mind when assessing their pricing structures (membership of FareShare is not, unfortunately, free – the franchisees have to pay for storage and distribution which comes, in part, from charging membership fees). Souper Saturday has grown enormously over the past 12 months and although we receive a very good deal from FareShare the political and economic climate would suggest that this growth is not about to stop or even slow down soon which means that we have to keep seeking out new sources of funding. During the meeting I found out that Souper Saturday has, in the last twelve months, received an astonishing 1.83 TONS of food from FareShare with a steady month on month increase in the amount of food we require.
All of which means that Souper Saturday can’t afford to be complacent. We are continuing to build on relationships which help us to provide an important service for vulnerable people in Edinburgh but we know that the work is ongoing and that there is no end in sight. We must continue to chase funding to support our endeavours and we must continue to seek new and innovative ways to help support our guests and our amazing team of volunteers.