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Rotary working hard to feed vulnerable families

Rotary working hard to feed vulnerable families

Ooooby, Winchester’s local not-for-profit veg box scheme has teamed up with Winchester Rotary to provide veg boxes to vulnerable families at no cost.

Ooooby, which stands for Out Of Our Own BackYards, was launched by Seb Mayfield and Debbie Lockett in July 2020.

Since then they have been delivering fresh veg to customers in the Winchester District from Alresford to Bishopstoke on a weekly basis.

Oooby vegetable box

As a result of funding from Winchester Rotary, Ooooby will be delivering free Good Food Boxes, packed full or fresh, organically grown veggies and fruit, to 15 vulnerable households in the Winchester District for three months.

As well as vegetables and fruit, Ooooby supports local artisan producers by enabling their customers to add items such as cheese, eggs and bread to their orders.

As a result of funding from Winchester Rotary, Ooooby will be delivering free Good Food Boxes, packed full or fresh, organically grown veggies and fruit, to 15 vulnerable households in the Winchester District for three months.

Seb Mayfield, Co-Director of Ooooby said: “We became a not-for-profit social enterprise at the beginning of 2021 as we are determined to make truly good food available to everyone, not just those on high incomes.

Ooooby, which stands for Out Of Our Own BackYards, was launched by Seb Mayfield and Debbie Lockett in July 2020.”

“We already accept Healthy Start Vouchers and we are now delighted to be working with Rotary to progress our work.”

Debbie Lockett, who set up Ooooby with Seb, said: “This pilot project with Winchester Rotary is a really important part of what we are aiming to do at Ooooby.

“We aim to work with the families we deliver free boxes to, to find out what impact it has on them and how effective the service is.

“We hope to then expand this particular part of our work following the pilot, to benefit more vulnerable families in and around Winchester.”

This pilot project with Winchester Rotary is a really important part of what we are aiming to do at Ooooby.”

Luke Addison, Winchester Rotary’s Environment Lead, said, “The decision to support the Ooooby Community Veg Box Pilot Programme was one that was made very, very quickly!

“It is clear that it is a well thought-out and community-centred project.

“Given the continuous and effective commitment the Ooooby Founders are making to the community of Winchester via the FirstBite Community Café and the Winchester Food Partnership, it was clear to us that we should support it and continue to do so throughout the three-month pilot and into the future!”

Ooooby continues to offer their regular and very popular range of veg boxes, available to order via their website.

They also offer ‘Honest to Goodness’ veg boxes on their website – a range provided at a subsidised cost aimed at families and individuals on low incomes.

To find out more, visit www.oooobyhampshire.com


Meanwhile, in North Wales, Llandudno Rotary is drastically widening its much-needed support to the Hope Restored Food Bank.

The club is working closely with the food bank’s organiser, Brenda Fogg, by helping to transport goods from a number of key collection points in the town.

Meanwhile, in North Wales, Llandudno Rotary is drastically widening its much-needed support to the Hope Restored Food Bank.

Waldemar Pazik, who runs the Kaszana Polish Shop in Craig-y-Don, has gathered a selection of Polish food items and placed them in a box to be transported to the Hope Restored Food Bank at West Shore.

Also at Craig-y-Don, Co-op Manager, Henry Morris, has established a donation point at the store with a collecting box by the side of the tills. More than 35kg of food had been delivered by Rotary to the Hope Restored headquarters.

The Rotarians are supporting a number of collection points in the town to ensure the items are delivered promptly.


In West London, Hounslow Rotarians have continued in their support for the community.

More than 1,000 faceshields were delivered to a number of key places in the borough. These had been donated by Kamal Bhardwaj and his family from Heston.

“I put them up on our Rotary Community SwapShop and Helping West London page WhatsApp page,” said Rotarian Mukesh Malhotra.

Mukesh and the Hounslow Rotarians have been working closely with the St Paul’s Church Foodbank throughout the Covid pandemic.

“Within an hour or so, they were equitably shared out. This proves how well social media works and can be made to work.”

Mukesh and the Hounslow Rotarians have been working closely with the St Paul’s Church Foodbank throughout the Covid pandemic.

They helped to organise and transport the latest donations including five cases of chickpeas, an assortment of food and woollens from Disability Network Hounslow, various woollens for babies, and young children which had been knitted by the ladies group of Hounslow Friends of Faith, plus more warm clothes and woollens from the Hounslow Multi Culture Centre

“We also received 300 washbags filled with masks, hand gel, soap and a dental kit, shampoo, along with 16 hat sets with gloves and some ladies’ jumpers,” added Mukesh.

“These were donated by the ‘Helping West London Group’ run by my Elthorne-Hillingdon Rotary’s President-elect, Sarah Gardner. In exchange, she was given about 150 faceshields for their projects.

“Foodbank will gain from the facilitation of Rotary in Hounslow, Hillingdon and Richmond, and the generosity of so many to help as many as we can through the various humanitarian projects across West London.

“If we had more, I’m sure we could have helped even more local groups.”