a spotlight on fareShare sussex
FareShare Sussex began in 2002, initially as a project feeding homeless people across Brighton and Hove. Over the last 19 years we have grown incrementally in response to need. In 2014, we joined the FareShare UK network and today we have a fleet of 5 vans and one e-cargo bike delivering food across Sussex and Surrey.
Our work addresses both food waste and hunger by redistributing food industry surplus which would otherwise be wasted, to the people that need it most.
We’re making sure that food gets to people who are vulnerable and affected by food poverty. We reach hungry people of all demographics: children living in poverty, elderly people living in isolation, victims of domestic violence, homeless people, those fighting addiction, disabled people, those who are unwell, ex-offenders and low-income families struggling to put food on the table.
The number of vulnerable people we provide food to weekly has increased to over 20,000, as has the geographical area that we serve. We now deliver to projects across East and West Sussex and Surrey.
We’re delivering surplus food from the food supply industries that would otherwise end up in landfill or go to waste. We deliver to 162 community groups across Sussex and parts of Surrey with plans to expand our reach further.
We offer supported pathways and employment training to encourage volunteers back into the workforce.
Last year, through our employability programme, we helped 17 of them find paid work. Further to this, 96% of our volunteers say that they feel better about doing something worthwhile, which highlights the need for our volunteer-led work in the community to ultimately alleviate mental wellbeing services.
The food we receive comes from all along the industry supply chain, from farms and manufacturers to wholesalers, supermarkets, and local bakeries. It is all good quality, in-date food that is surplus for a variety of reasons such as changes in packaging, incorrect forecasting, or labeling errors. We also receive donated food from individuals via supermarket collection points.
In July 2021, Conal took part in our FLAVOUR employability course, Fareshare Futures. He was out of work due to health reasons and needed a boost in confidence regarding his CV and interview techniques.
Conal really got stuck in as soon as he arrived, volunteering three days a week whilst completing the course.
In August, he successfully completed his Level 2 Food Hygiene certificate and decided to stay with FareShare Sussex and continue volunteering three days a week. At the beginning of September he was nominated to become a Lead Volunteer and, by the end of September, he was nudged towards applying for the Warehouse Assistant role.
Conal showed extreme commitment and enthusiasm and today he’s part of the FareShare Sussex staff team full time.