My name is Sally . I’ve been a volunteer at Littlehampton community fridge
from September 2019 shortly after the project started . We spent the
first few months based at Littlehampton library, when there were only
around a dozen volunteers and only a small amount of rescued food.
My role is to go on a food collection with my husband Steven to Barnham Co-op
and Aldi, Rustington on a Tuesday evening and to help run a session on
Wednesday afternoons with a few other volunteers.
I’m also responsible for regularly checking the boxes of rescued bread,
sorting it into categories and throwing out any that is stale.
My initial reason for volunteering at the fridge was that I have a
gentleman with learning difficulties who lives with me full time under
West Sussex County Council shared lives scheme. Rupert goes out during the
week with day carers but I felt he lacked any purpose and needed a job to
call his own. Rupert comes to the session on Wednesdays and his job is to
mop the hall floor and then bag up all the loose fruit and veg and
anything else that needs sorting and bagging. Rupert is a very valued
member of the team because his jobs are very much needed, because volunteers
have little time when running the sessions to be able to bag items up.
Rupert loves coming to the fridge and wears his volunteer lanyard with
immense pride. It has really boosted his confidence, his social skills
and given him a sense of purpose. I’m very happy to support him in his role
and enjoy my own small contribution to the scheme too.
The volunteer team has grown from the original dozen to more than 70 now
and we all don’t know each other as that would be impossible. We are a
diverse bunch but we all have in common the desire to rescue food and see
decent food go to the community rather than the dustbin. I particularly
love seeing posts on the Facebook page where customers show what they have
cooked with rescued food.
Sessions are great fun with lots of banter between the volunteers and
customers. One time we were donated a pair of slippers from a supermarket
so we put them out and o and behold the next day, one of the customers came
to the session sporting the slippers. We were glad to have made his day!