FareShare Sussex & Surrey launches frozen food campaign to boost support  

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FareShare Sussex & Surrey has launched a new crowdfunding campaign to help charities and community groups increase their capacity for frozen food, to feed more people experiencing hunger and food poverty.

The food waste charity hopes to raise £20,000 to enable ten of its partner charities and community groups to take more frozen and chilled surplus food, and therefore provide more food to those struggling to afford to eat across Sussex and Surrey.

FareShare Sussex & Surrey will use the money raised to offer a range of support for charities and community groups in the two counties, including purchasing more fridges, freezers and temperature tracking equipment as well as providing relevant training for volunteers and staff.

Having acquired a new warehouse in Guildford in Surrey, FareShare Sussex & Surrey has tripled its capacity for frozen and chilled food and has invested in a frozen van to accept and transport greater quantities of frozen food to stop it going to waste.

The charity receives a variety of surplus foods which are already frozen, such as meats, meat alternatives and mixed vegetables, and can prolong the life of products such as bread, raw meat and dairy by freezing them.

Dan Slatter, CEO of FareShare Sussex & Surrey said: “Unlike other redistribution charities, we can take large amounts of chilled and frozen produce which would otherwise go to waste.

“Last year, we supplied 66 charities and community groups with 43 tonnes of frozen food. Thanks to our new Surrey warehouse, we have tripled our capacity to redistribute frozen food so we can provide urgent support to those who are suffering from food insecurity in areas of Surrey that are often overlooked.

We know it’s expensive for charities and community groups to invest in their own commercial equipment, which is why we’re launching this campaign to help ten of our partner charities and groups accept more frozen items. This means we’ll be able to feed more people suffering with hunger in Sussex and Surrey, including the homeless and those living in supported accommodation, young parents and the elderly.”

Lou Foley from Stonewater, a charity which provides refuge spaces for domestic abuse survivors in Brighton, said: “The benefits of having a fridge here would keep the fresh items last longer, as we don’t have any other means of keeping them fresh. 

“We only have a dry cupboard where all the FareShare Sussex & Surrey items are stored. I hate to throw away food because we’re unable to keep it chilled. Having a fridge will help keep the capacity for food longer and benefit all.”

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Trudy Hampton, CEO of Warming Up The Homeless in Hastings, East Sussex, said: “FareShare Sussex & Surrey is a lifesaver for our charity and those it serves. Regular deliveries of good quality food helps us produce 1,400 nutritious meals a week, cooked from scratch to feed those sleeping rough or in vulnerable housing without cooking equipment. 

“The meals are frozen so we can provide prepared food in our support parcels which we deliver to 450 – 600 families a week.”

Sarah Renfrey, project manager at Littlehampton Community Fridge in West Sussex, said: “Our deliveries and collections of food from FareShare Sussex & Surrey have enabled us to support our Littlehampton Fridge-On-Tour pop-up community fridges, as well as our main hub, the Littlehampton Community Fridge.

“This means we can help hundreds of people a week in Littlehampton and surrounding areas to access a variety of different foods, which can help with the current cost-of-living crisis for many of our visitors.”

Jules Hopkins, project coordinator at Knaphill Community Fridge in Surrey, said: “Our visitors are delighted to receive frozen food which they can pop in their own freezer to use another day. It also expands the variety of food in the diet – often people are happy to try things they may never have had before or wouldn’t normally fall within their own budget.  

“The occasional frozen ready meal or pizza can save the day for a busy family, or a bag of frozen vegetables can add balance to the diet – and of course the more food that can be saved from going to waste, including frozen food, is a winner for the environment.”

FareShare Sussex & Surrey rescues and redistributes surplus food to more than 150 local organisations across the counties, helping to combat hunger and prevent waste.

The charity helps those who live in areas with the highest levels of deprivation, working with groups that provide healthy meals and support such as advice, guidance, health support, counselling and befriending to help break the cycle of poverty.

To donate to the FareShare Sussex & Surrey frozen food campaign, please visit: www.crowdfunder.co.uk/p/fsss-frozen

For more information, please visit: www.faresharesussexandsurrey.org.uk.

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