Meal Makers is taking on social isolation in Perth and Kinross

Meal Makers want to tackle food insecurity and social isolation by developing its community-based meal sharing project into Perth and Kinross.

Meal Makers want to tackle food insecurity and social isolation by developing its community-based meal sharing project into Perth and Kinross.

The service is for anyone aged 55 years and older, who would like to have a volunteer Cook bring them a nutritious home cooked meal and some company.

This is a portion of whatever the volunteer Cook is making for their own dinner, so no special skills are required other than an interest in making home cooked food and having a chat. Meal Makers uses an online platform to match people who live close by, but also have similar interests and tastes in food.

Meal Makers received funding from The Gannochy Trust that will enable staff to develop the
neighbourhood meal sharing project in the area, which is welcomed during a time when social isolation and food insecurity have become a national priority due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Meal Makers is a subsidiary of the Charity Food Train and was launched 6 years ago; to date it has shared over 30,000 meals across all 20 Scottish local authorities. Food Train celebrates its 25 th Birthday this year and has supported thousands of older people to have access to food, friendship, and a variety of other home services so they can eat well, age well and live well.

Meal Makers has been innovative in changing its approach to meal sharing and follows strict safety guidelines due to Covid-19. Volunteer Cooks are still taking meals to their Diners, but it might mean a chat in the garden, weather permitting, or a food parcel dropped off on the doorstep followed by a chat on the phone. Volunteer Cooks and Diners often form meaningful friendships, which increases the wellbeing of both parties. Access to nutritious food and preventing social isolation is top of the agenda for much of the third sector in Perth and Kinross, and there are many superb Covid-19 crisis response groups across the region. Meal Makers hopes to add to any other support people may receive from
these groups, as well as other third sector organisations.

Meal Makers are recruiting volunteers across Perth and Kinross, and they are open to take referrals for older people who would like a homecooked meal. With Christmas around the corner, many people are feeling very isolated so now is a perfect time to sign up as a volunteer Cook or Diner.

More information on the charity can be found here mealmakers.org.uk

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