Posted by: Laura Hammond
Thu 16th June 2022
A group in Riddings has opened a community pantry where people can do their food shopping for just £5.
Oscari, based at the Church of Christ in Colledge Street, has launched the community pantry in response to the cost of living crisis.
The group, made up of volunteers, has run a food bank for some time but felt that more was needed to help those in need.
Tracy Gibson, from Oscari, said: “The food bank is a wonderful idea but not sustainable, it is there purely for emergencies.
“People do not feel dignity and pride when using the food bank. Although we have a no stigma rule, and we welcome everyone, we decided that virtually everyone has a spare £5 that they could do their shopping with.
“And it [the pantry] would promote dignity and respect, and allow people to choose what they want to eat, as in the food parcel from the food bank it is basic and dry goods.
“The pantry has those basic staples but we can also add in fresh meat, veg and fruit as well.”
The pantry opens weekly on a Tuesday and members can visit each week. Anybody can become a member. It is £10 to join and then £5 thereafter for a weekly shop.
For £5, members of the pantry can buy food worth at least £50 but most shops tend to have a value of between £75 and £100.
Oscari currently stocks the market by buying food from Sainsbury’s and HIS Church, and receives deliveries from FareShare.
However, the group does need donations – both of food and money – to help keep the pantry going.
You can find out more information about the community pantry and the food bank by contacting Oscari directly. Oscari also runs a craft group.
All of the group’s contact details are available via it’s Facebook page, which you can find here.
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