A COMMUNITY Food Fleet has come to the rescue after hundreds of vulnerable Warwickshire residents faced going hungry.
The former meals on wheels service – run by Apetito and commissioned by Warwickshire County Council – stopped operating at the end of last month, leaving the county’s elderly and vulnerable residents without a service which delivered hot meals direct to their door.
But local charity WRCC, known for its Back&4th community transport minibuses and network of Warm Hubs among other services, has now stepped in by setting up a new Community Food Fleet Service. Its mission is to provide door- to-door meals to all those who need them throughout Warwickshire.
Mary-Anne Taylor, whose 94-year-old mother lives in Kenilworth and is housebound due to having various health issues, said: “This is fantastic news. Many of us have been worried that vulnerable people have been left to fend for themselves. My mother looked forward to seeing the person who used to bring her meals, and hopefully the new service will also be able to employ some of these drivers who were so friendly and helpful.”
WRCC’s Chief Executive Kim Slater continued: “We know that many people are already affected by lack of access to a cooked meals service, and our charity is committed to meeting this community need. Our Community Food Fleet will provide more than plated hot food up to seven days a week – our team of drivers will also make sure people are safe and well in their homes, supporting their wellbeing and providing peace of mind for relatives.”
WRCC is already taking enquiries from people looking to subscribe and aims to launch this new service at the beginning of July – a challenging deadline but one that reflects residents’ need.
Premises and vehicles have been located and all involved are keen to get the service on the road without more delay. The charity is transparent about the need for a steep price rise, as WCC has withdrawn its subsidy and VAT will also apply. But this is where other organisations can help to make the service more affordable, with a range of options on the table.
WRCC’s Chair of Trustees Colin Parrott added: “We’re calling on other responsible charities, local councils and commercial organisations to step up to the plate at this critical time. This is a fantastic opportunity for you to support an essential home meals delivery service which will really make a difference to people who need it most in Warwickshire. If you want to become a potential partner, please get in touch now.”