A convent providing food and support to homeless and vulnerable people in Edinburgh is one of the many great charities and groups that are now able to help more people thanks to the Asda Fight Hunger Create Change programme.
We're donating £20 million to food charities FareShare and The Trussell Trust over the next three years, and our support has enabled FareShare to improve their Central and South East Scotland distribution centre in Leith so it can receive and redistribute more fresh food.
St Catharine's Convent of Mercy's project to support homeless and vulnerable people in Edinburgh is one of the schemes that receive regular food deliveries from FareShare, using the supplies to provide hot meals for 200 people every weekday.
FareShare volunteer Bryan Godfrey, who regularly delivers to the convent, says he's been dropping off more fresh meat, vegetables and fruit since our programme began.
Bryan said: "I’ve been volunteering with FareShare for almost three years and it’s an amazing organisation to be a part of. I love that FareShare is able to provide such a simple solution to the environmental problem that is food waste.
"When I started, I couldn’t believe how much food came into the warehouse that would have gone to waste had it not come to FareShare, but it’s fantastic that we’re able to redistribute it to those who, without FareShare food, might go hungry.
"Now thanks to Asda and the Fight Hunger programme, it’s great that we’ll be able to provide even more support to people in need in Edinburgh.
"Having got to know our charity members and the community so well over the past year or so, I know their support is really valued and appreciated and will enable all of us at FareShare to make a real difference, tackling food poverty on a really meaningful level in the city.”
The convent welcomes anyone in for breakfast brunches and evening meals five days a week and also helps people access the support they need.
Sister Aelred Timmins is director of the homeless project and said: "FareShare's support is very important to us and the people we help. It gives us a better quality of food, lots of it and it's nutritious too. We do go out to buy food but of course it can be very pricy, so FareShare's support is vital to us.
"We welcome people in Monday to Friday – absolutely everybody is welcome. We help up to 200 people a day. It's all about helping the community.
"We have breakfast brunches where people can get a full cooked breakfast, and every weeknight we have a different evening meal, something like spaghetti bolognese followed by apple crumble and ice cream.
"As well as not having a home to go to, if you're homeless you're lonely too, you may have poor health and other issues. We link them up with various support groups such as Narcotics Anonymous and Alcoholics Anonymous."