BPT had a busy December helping the community with additional food distribution and a sit-down Christmas lunch; and Felix Project Ambassadors helped to bring a touch of stardust to the festive efforts of the team!
Firstly, on December 8th BPT welcomed our valued community participants to the annual BPT community Christmas Lunch in our Community Café. For many of our older participants who live alone or have no family locally, this is their main Christmas lunch and a wonderful opportunity to socialise with friends and enjoy a hearty Christmas meal with food generously donated by The Felix Project.
One participant in her 80s who attends multiple sessions per week said “I have been coming to Black Prince Trust for many years and I enjoy every moment. I meet wonderful people who are caring and I know if I have a problem they will sort it out. This is a wonderful place to be.”
Another participant who attends Walking Football every week remarked of the lunch “Today was a fantastic occasion for me. I live on my own so this is the best Christmas meal I’m going to have. The company was absolutely fantastic. Black Prince Trust is underrated – if you could compare the staff to a football team, the football team would be Manchester City!”
This was just the start of the Christmas push from BPT: while the site shut for the Christmas break on December 22nd, we continued to open for food distribution throughout December including a special Christmas Eve distribution with some extra special support thanks to Felix Project Ambassadors.
In addition to our usual donations sourced from hundreds of suppliers from across the food industry like Amazon, Ocado, Sainsbury’s, Able & Cole, Natoora, Hello Fresh and even farms such as HE Hall & Sons; our community received a special Christmas treat with supplies donated from Fortnum & Mason’s famous luxury store in Piccadilly and the Daylesford Organic Farmshop on Pimlico Road.
In addition to the luxury goods, BPT and Felix Project staff and volunteers were joined by Actor David Morrissey and chef Melissa Hemsley who helped to collect unsold surplus food and came to BPT to unpack and distribute to our community.
Walking Dead star Morrissey and food writer and sustainability champion Hemsley are long-standing volunteers for The Felix Project, and were delighted to help out and brighten Christmas for those in our community who continue to struggle with the cost-of-living throughout the festive period.
Morrissey said to The Standard: “I have so much respect and admiration for the essential work that The Felix Project do. The deliveries of fresh, healthy, top quality food they provide on a daily basis, are a real lifeline to thousands of communities across London. It’s an honour to be able to help out on Christmas Eve with Marcus and Melissa, ‘‘tis the season to give back after all.”
Hemsley said: “I adore The Felix Project. It’s such a fantastic organisation that’s really making such a huge positive impact to so many people from all walks of life. I love volunteering with them, it’s a real joy to be out in the van helping with the deliveries, especially at Christmas.”
Our CEO Richard Joyce paid tribute to the work of The Felix Project and the support we received with the additional Christmas delivery and special guests who helped to collect and distribute: “The twice weekly donations we receive from The Felix Project are so important to our community, and over Christmas being able to support people who really need it is more important than ever. Though our hub closes over the Christmas break, we continue to open to distribute food because for so many people hardship does not stop for festivities. We are so grateful that The Felix Project don’t just continue to support us and our community but redouble their efforts. The Christmas Eve donation is a wonderful gesture from The Felix Project and their partners and on behalf of the people who benefit we really cannot thank them enough.”
BPT continues to receive donations from Felix Project every Wednesday and Friday as part of our food programme – see the dedicated page on our website for more information including how those in need can benefit.