Honour for Keynsham lunch club that offers 'so much more than a meal'

Published on: 03 Mar 2017

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Volunteers behind a Keynsham lunch club who serve up “so much more than a meal”, according to its supporters, have been recognised for their work.

Mandy’s Kitchen at Community @ 67 was launched when Mandy Oliver began offering taster sessions to encourage some of the centre’s older visitors to try new food.

Three years later, the initiative is now a lunch club that serves up to 30 people every Friday at the Queens Road premises and Mandy, Trish Adams, Margaret Davies, Stan Hancock and Ted Smith have just been Highly Commended in the Volunteer Team of the Year category in this year’s Bath and North East Somerset Council Chairman’s Community Awards.

The awards judges said the group had created “a warm, welcoming, fun, environment for the community to participate in”, with volunteers preparing and cooking the food, cleaning up and providing the opportunity for people who had been isolated to help out and volunteer.

Fellow Community @ 67 volunteers Patricia Adams, Margaret Davies and Christina Smith were also nominated for Volunteer of the Year in recognition of their work.

Congratulating all the volunteers, Adrian Inker, vice chair of Community @ 67, said: “We are very proud of all our volunteers at Community @ 67.  As a totally voluntary organisation we could not deliver such a range of services without their time and dedication. We were especially pleased that Mandy Oliver’s team of volunteers was recognised.  The lunch club, which is for all the community, brings people together for a meal every Friday.  What Mandy manages to create each week is outstanding.”

The awards, which celebrate individuals and organisations making a positive contribution to their communities, were presented by B&NES chairman Alan Hale in a ceremony at the Guildhall in Bath on February 9.

Cllr Hale said: “I would like to congratulate all our winners, and indeed those nominated for an award.  They all make a fantastic contribution to the local community and I hope their stories are an inspiration to others to make a difference.”

The Chairman’s Community Awards are organised in partnership with the Volunteer Centre Bath and beyond; social housing provider Curo; the Student Community Partnership, involving the University of
Bath and Bath Spa University students unions; and Sirona care & health.

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