We founded Gratitude in March 2013. Primarily to save food from waste and alleviating poverty in our local community. This was all done from a small shed until now. MP Oliver Dowden helped us to find a new, bigger and more suitable home for our rapidly growing charity.
Although Gratitude operate from the building since last November, today was our first opportunity to run the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony safely. Covid restrictions and the availability of our MP only allowed us to organise this long waited but worthy event.
Although the ceremony only happened today, we already made good use of the building in the past year
More than 60 volunteers are running the Gratitude Hub in a well organised rota. Thanks to their hard work we have served the local community with an average £90,000 worth of groceries a month. We have an average of 2000 service users a week. They benefit from free groceries, detergents, baby essentials and a free clothes bank. We also took part in the Afghan refugees‘ appeal, Haiti relief efforts, running knitting for a charity group, singing sessions, salsa for beginners class as well as numerous youth groups workshops.
During this year the Gratitude Team was continously trying to find opportunities to further enhance the building and its functions. Below are a few just to mention some of the biggest milestones:
- fine tuned our grocery givaway system to be fully Covid safe, yet effective and fair to most visitors
- started up a baby corner to support young families with essencial items.
- equipped the bulding with many fridges & freezers some of which are going to be retired by a dedicated chiller room
- turned the garage into to a High Tech Food Reception Area
- established our internal recycling process
- kept the surroundings of the building maintained by self promoted gardeners
- decorated the front fascia boards.
- sorted out initial leaks and issues with the building
- and more to come…
Ribbon cutting moment
MP Oliver Dowden was taken on a tour of the Hub, viewing the various areas of distributions culminating in a visit to the newly established cold storage facility.
His visit was also an opportunity to meet and thank some of our supporters who contribute significantly to the growth of Gratitude.
Phots by Valeria Fazekas and Panna Bunty Shah