East Devon funding helps to keep Axminster 'nourished' during pandemic

  Posted: 21.06.21 at 11:47 by Francesca Evans

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A total of 31 worthy projects have so far been funded by East Devon District Council’s Coronavirus Community Food Fund, giving out a total of more than £45,000.

This fund provides grants for any projects related to providing food to residents of East Devon who are in food poverty during the coronavirus pandemic.

One of the latest projects to receive £2,000 from the Coronavirus Community Food Fund was Nourish, a community group based in Axminster.

Half of this grant allowed them to source and deliver Christmas meals and hampers to individuals and families in need in Axminster, Seaton, Beer, Dunkeswell, Shute, Membury, Smallridge and Musbury.

And 55 Christmas hampers were given out to households for free, all containing a full Christmas dinner for each person in the household made by Nourish, plus some festive treats.

Karen Taylor from Nourish, said: “We wanted to give the people of Axminster and surrounding areas something really special because it had been a very tough year for many.

“We could have easily made it easy for us to do but we decided that by putting in the effort to make it really special it would lift peoples spirits a little.

“This is what Nourish is all about, it is not just about feeding people with food, it is feeding them some love at the same time and that means taking great care with attention to detail.

“Everyone likes to feel special. I make the effort for anyone who came to dinner, why should a stranger be any different!”

The second half of Nourish’s £2,000 grant helped to pay for the costs of the packaging and delivering meals to vulnerable people who were in need and/or shielding.

When someone was given a meals parcel from Nourish, they got several meals depending on their tastes and food allergies. These varied from boiled rice, meat dishes, fish dishes, soups, stews including vegetarian and vegan meals.

In May, June and July 2020 they delivered about 772 meals, amounting to about 1,400 portions.

Cllr Marianne Rixson, East Devon District Council portfolio holder responsible for Coronavirus Response and Recovery, said: “Nourish in Axminster are clearly not just filling a need but doing so with great care and attention.  My congratulations to all concerned but particularly to Karen for her obvious concern for the community.

Cllr Andrew Moulding, East Devon District Council ward member for Axminster Town, added: “I’m pleased that Nourish from Axminster received £2,000 from the Coronavirus Community Food Fund.

“Nourish has greatly assisted vulnerable families in our community who are struggling to make ends meet. This was particularly important during the height of the coronavirus lockdown period and at Christmas, when families were really feeling the strain.

Cllr Sarah Jackson, fellow East Devon District Council ward member for Axminster Town, continued: “I am absolutely delighted to see Nourish benefit from these funds. 

“Having volunteered to help deliver some of the Nourish Christmas meals last year, I can attest to just how much of a difference they made to those who would have otherwise struggled without them.  

“Karen and Mary work incredibly hard to ensure that there is always a hearty meal available for those that need it, and I am sure this grant will go a long way to help them to continue this valuable work.” 

Cllr Ian Hall, Devon county councillor and East Devon District Council ward member for Axminster Town, commented: “I am so incredibly pleased that Nourish has received funding from the Coronavirus Community Food Fund to support those who need the necessary support during these times of uncertainty. 

“We will continue to support Karen and the team in our capacities as district councillors and also in my role as county councillor to ensure going forward this much needed service is able to go from strength to strength. Thank you all.”

To find out more and apply to the Coronavirus Community Food Fund, visit eastdevon.gov.uk/coronavirus-covid-19/community-support/coronavirus-community-food-fund/

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