We are delighted to continue our support of Love Marlborough Kids Meals who provide families in need in the Marlborough area with meals. The grant made in December 2023 was to fund Christmas grocery bags. Catherine Williams is the coordinator at Kids Meals and we asked her to tell us what has been happening.
“Kids Meals was started in 2020 during Lockdown. Our mission is to provide a hot meal for families in need in the Marlborough area, including outlying villages. We currently send out 37 family meals, every Friday afternoon.
We are run entirely by local volunteers- a cooking team and a delivery team who operate on a rota. We also have other volunteers behind the scenes, running our finances and fundraising, media and communications, family liaison and volunteer administration.
We should mention Kymee Cleasby and the key role she plays in Kids Meals. She was inspired to create this support organisation in Marlborough and now hosts us at her catering company (SBC), providing professional kitchens and fuel, free of charge.
This year we have expanded what we send out to families just before Christmas. We added pigs in blankets to our hot food menu and created some special foodie gifts alongside a few staples for the season. Our cooks team had a great idea to create a cookie-in-a-jar kit. We sourced some nice storage jars and filled them with dry ingredients for Christmas Cookies. These were labelled, a recipe card created and we also bought cookie cutters to include with the bags.
We provided the additional eggs and butter needed to complete the recipe, plus some carrots, easy peelers and a sweet treat in each bag.
One family replied to our family liaison phone later that evening:
“Wow! I was not expecting all the added gifts. A huge thank you from me and my family. It’s been a great help.”
Our families have a variety of challenging circumstances- some have experienced domestic violence or mental health difficulties. Others are in employment but still struggle to make ends meet. Families can stay with us as long as needed- we check in with them from time to time to make sure they are ok and we are still needed. Families come and go, and we have found that as one family leaves our list another joins. However, we anticipate that the Winter months will again be busy- last year we regularly cooked 45-50 meals each week.”
We got to know the people at Kids Meals through Karen Davis, a supporter of the Foundation, who introduced us to this great organisation. It is a wonderful example of people coming together to address a real need in their community. Hopefully we will be making grants to Kids Meals for years to come.