A joint bid to tackle food poverty by a local authority and housing association could see around 200,000 meals delivered a year, it’s been revealed.
Flintshire Council and Clwyd Alyn Housing Association are looking to work with a social enterprise to provide healthy and affordable food for people in North Wales.
The initiative was one of several recently approved by members of Flintshire’s ruling cabinet.
Chief executive Colin Everett said it was designed to help residents who are unable to access or afford fresh food.
The two organisations have now signalled their intention to put out a tender notice to find a not-for-profit entity to deliver the scheme.
In an information notice published on the Sell2Wales website, representatives from the housing association said a food hub would be created to provide meals for its nursing and care facilities, as well as the council’s annual initiative to feed youngsters during the summer holidays.
They said: “Clwyd Alyn is a registered social landlord with properties throughout North Wales.
“In its portfolio are 12 nursing, care and extra care facilities in locations from Wrexham to Holyhead.
“Clwyd Alyn and Flintshire County Council wish to work in partnership with a suitable organisation to provide a hub to produce the meals for these facilities.
“It is anticipated that around 200,000 meals will be produced and delivered each year.
“The service will also work on behalf of Flintshire County Council to support its schemes to provide meals to children during school holiday periods.
“It is expected that the partner will also provide additional services to support ongoing work on food poverty, by, for example providing discounted healthy meals to tenants of our other properties and staff, training opportunities for local people and develop contacts with local groups to encourage community involvement.”
Officials said the enterprise would be expected to provide meals with a balanced nutritional value which also offer value for money.
The partner organisation would be responsible for preparing food at a central hub, and distributing meals to different locations.
They said the hub should be located in North Wales and offer local employment opportunities.
They added: “The partner should be a social enterprise specialising in the provision of affordable meals which are more nutritious and healthy than readily-available alternatives.
“The partner must have experience in providing large numbers of cooked meals, delivery management to clear deadlines, an understanding of the importance of nutrition in a care/community setting and providing better quality, healthier and affordable food for those in food poverty.
“The partner must have a demonstrable desire to support communities in North Wales.”
It is anticipated that the service could be launched in autumn this year.
If the project proves successful, it could be expanded to provide food for other social landlords and local authorities in north and mid Wales.
By Liam Randall – Local Democracy Reporter (more here).