Second Helpings is the brainchild of a member of Stamford Methodist Church. Prior to lockdown, volunteers collected surplus food from shops, farms, restaurants and hotels, and used it to cook food at the church every Saturday, with many people coming to eat and paying only what they can afford.
Since March 2020, Second Helpings cooks have made more than 10,860 takeaway meals to support the community through the pandemic, this would have not been possible without the kitchen and the commitment of its volunteers.
The project has quickly become a huge success because of the way it has brought the community together, but there was one big problem…
The food storage facilities at the church were not up to scratch, with nowhere to store food collected overnight - other than the church’s basement cellar, already full to bursting – and the kitchen was in need of an urgent upgrade.
With the support of an Benefact Trust Methodist Grant of £1,300, Stamford Methodist now has an attractive kitchen with all the mod cons and professional facilities it needs to serve its community through Second Helpings, Twinkletots, Wednesday Fellowship, history groups and the many other groups who use it.
Rev’d Andy Fyall of The Stamford Methodist Circuit, said: “If ‘Jam and Jerusalem’ is a good description of the Women’s Institute, then quiche, care and singing is the equivalent for the Methodist Church. Given the amazing, dedicated and endless work of Second Helpings alongside our regular use, the church kitchen was very much in need of refurbishment. We are delighted that the newly refurbished kitchen, now brought up to a professional standard, enables the church’s mission and outreach showing care to the needy and vulnerable through Second Helpings to grow and thrive.”
Paul Playford, Grants Officer for Benefact Trust, added: “It has been an extremely challenging year for many communities, with the pandemic exacerbating issues such as food poverty. We’re delighted to have been able to support the renovation of Stamford Methodist’s kitchen so that they can continue to serve their community as effectively as possible and reach the most vulnerable at this difficult time.”