Leith-based Community Interest Company, Empty Kitchens, Full Hearts has provided over 250,000 fresh, healthy meals to people in Edinburgh during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Founded in April as a direct response to the coronavirus crisis, Empty Kitchens, Full Hearts provides safe access to healthy food for local residents who would otherwise go hungry. They rescue surplus food and transform it into free, healthy meals for daily delivery.
Empty Kitchens, Full Hearts create Day Packs containing three easily heatable meals, as well as fruit and a snack. These Day Packs are delivered across Edinburgh by a team of volunteer cyclists and drivers. In addition, they also run two daily hot food services from their home base at the Leith Theatre. They serve up to over 150 walk-in guests per day.
There is no sign of the need abating. Having now delivered 250,000 meals, continuing with the current numbers, Empty Kitchens, Full Hearts is on track to provide 500,000 meals in the next six months. To date, over 83 tonnes of food has been rescued and repurposed. This food would otherwise have gone to waste.
Lewis MacLachlan, the Founding Director of Empty Kitchens, Full Hearts, commented on the 250,000 milestone: “With more and more food insecure citizens coming to us every day, and therefore our costs rising, we’re obviously concerned about the future. If services like us stop, we don’t know where people will get their next meal. The situation really is that dire.”
The number of people experiencing food poverty is increasing. Food poverty is a state where individuals don’t have enough money to buy food. Most often it entails making choices about what income can be spent on. This situation will be magnified intensely by the upcoming winter.
If you, or someone you know, does not have safe access to food, please contact Empty Kitchens, Full Hearts to arrange delivery, or visit their kitchen at Leith Theatre, 28 – 30 Ferry Road, EH6 4AE for the hot meal service between 11:30 – 12:30 or 16:30 – 17:30 daily.
Credit: Empty Kitchens