Cre8 Macclesfield is a charity and social enterprise providing activities and services for children, young people and young adults. During the first COVID-19 lockdown in 2020, Cre8 joined the FareShare Greater Manchester network and converted its surplus food grocery into a home delivery service to get ready-made food parcels to peoples’ doorsteps.
With elderly and vulnerable people cut off from their usual support networks, FareShare food has enabled Cre8 to meet the vast need in its local community. They were able to scale-up operations to run five days a week, reaching up to 150 households per week. They were also able to regularly provide ingredients to the nearby Hope Centre cafe in Macclesfield, which has been producing home-cooked frozen meals for the most vulnerable in the community.
Since joining FareShare, Cr8 have utilised nearly 51 tonnes of food – among the highest in our entire network of over 220 members. This equates to around 120,000 meal portions.
Those we support have described the help we were able to provide as ‘lifesaving’, and it’s only with Fareshare GM’s support that we were able to do this. Becoming a new member during COVID-19 was a simple process, and we were helped every step of the way by the volunteers and staff on-site at the Manchester depot. It has made such a difference to our food offering and really helped our community across Macclesfield.
I am struck by the sense of belonging and togetherness being part of the FareShare network has brought us. Alongside the worry and fear of new challenges that we are facing daily, we are so aware of the sense of community that being part of the network has brought us. Our trips to FareShare are full of hope. Often when we took food that was close to its use by date, that would mean driving back late and driving round the streets to get the food out, and the response was always joyful. The sense of family and belonging and that we will get through this together, being part of something bigger, has helped our small charity survive and our community feel loved, which is needed now more than ever.
Ameera Fletcher, Director