Neighbours are being urged to dish up an extra portion of casserole – or whatever is on the menu – to pass onto people unable to cook for themselves.
Brighton and Hove Food Partnership is today launching the city’s first Casserole Club, which will be rolled out over the summer.
Director of BHFP Vic Borrill said: “This is an exciting opportunity to deliver a new project in the city and for us to work with two new partners both of whom are committed to using food to reduce loneliness in the city.
“Casserole Club neatly fits with the ambition of the Food Poverty Action Plan to become a city that cooks and eats together as it gets more people eating and cooking fresh meals while strengthening local neighbourhood relationships.”
Like a local, community-led takeaway, members serve up meals to their neighbours, and it’s hoped it will get more people cooking fresh food while strengthening local neighbourhood relationships.
Casserole is supported by a website which allows you to sign up as person who likes to cook and are up for sharing an extra plate of home cooked food (cooks) and to search for neighbours who could really benefit from a home cooked hot meal (diners).
It will first be available in Westbourne, Goldsmid, Central Hove, Queen’s Park and Hanover and Elm Grove.
Casserole was developed as an idea by FutureGov, which has teamed up in Brighton with BHFP, local charity Impetus and marketing agency Bright Dials with funding from the Big Lottery to run the pilot scheme.
Cooks sign up on the website and need to complete a food hygiene quiz and to have a DBS check before they are fully signed up. Once they are, they can be introduced to a diner and arrange a time to share their food.
Cooks can search for diners living nearby on the website at any time and are free to cook for more than one diner if they choose.
Diners are referred to the project by people they know and trust. This could be a friend or family member or, most commonly someone running a service that the diner is receiving.
This could be someone running a lunch club, day centre, sheltered housing or older person’s voluntary group. Social workers, GPs and hospital discharge teams can also refer diners. And of course diners can refer themselves by phoning up their local Casserole Club.
Volunteer cooks are invited to a launch event and induction on today from 6pm – 8pm at the Brighthelm Centre. Anyone planning on attending should register first here.