A brand-new ‘Community Fridge’ facility in Hailsham opened its doors to the public at the James West Community Centre on Saturday [18th June], which aims to bring people together to stop food waste.
Hailsham Town Council recently agreed to offer its support to Pass It On (In Your Community) CIC by granting permission to volunteers from the project to use the lobby of the James West Community Centre in Brunel Drive for storage of surplus food in a community fridge and freezer, for collection by residents.
Pass It On is a new local charitable organisation, founded and run by Zoe Prior, Lin Palmer and Karen Mariner to support the people of Hailsham and surrounding areas and stop food waste.
Zoe currently undertakes all the food collections for the ‘Community Fridge’ based at the Hailsham East Community and Children’s Centre, which is a Sussex Community Development Association (SCDA) funded project run in collaboration with the centre. It is open on weekdays from 10am-4pm and will continue to operate as it is.
Zoe collects surplus and waste food from supermarkets including Waitrose, Co-op, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Aldi and Lidl, as well as from Booker’s and the Hawkswood petrol station. The donated surplus food is put into the Community Fridge – available to everyone in the community – and isn’t means tested, with no forms to fill in at all.
Zoe Prior said: “As prices continue to increase and more families need help, we are finding that people are using community fridges much more. I find that, although we are helping many families, it is the working people that cannot get to the Hailsham East Community Centre when the fridge operates from there. This is why I felt that setting up a weekend fridge would help many more people – and having it at the James West Community Centre would spread the help across the town.”
“I’m grateful to the Town Council for allowing us to use the James West Community Centre for this important community project and delighted that the Town Mayor was able to officially cut the ribbon to declare the project open,” Zoe added.
“Hopefully this will be the first of many projects that Pass it On will be involved with. There are many excellent charitable organisations in Hailsham and I hope we can work together to bring people of all ages together and make a difference in our community.”
Town Mayor Councillor Paul Holbrook commented: “The Community Fridge idea continues to gain momentum all over the country and are a platform for sharing surplus food within a community to reduce food waste going to landfill. They are not means tested, are open to all and differ from the vital role food banks play – but offer a complementary provision.”
“It’s great to see that many supermarkets and retailers are only too pleased to see surplus food items – such as bread, meat, fruit and vegetables – go onto people’s dinner plates as opposed to being consigned to the bin.”
“The Town Council is delighted to work alongside the newly established Pass It On charitable organisation by offering space to operate from at the James West Community Centre. Hailsham has a great community spirit and people here certainly look out for each other and by working together, we can all do our bit towards reducing the amount of food going to waste.”
Terry Hall, Communications & Public Information Officer
Hailsham Town Council, Market Street, Hailsham, East Sussex, BN27 2AE
Telephone: 01323 841702 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org