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Food and health case studies

Scotland has a strong history of community food initiatives, from lunch clubs and food co-ops to youth cafés and gardening projects, all working to improve health and wellbeing in low-income areas and to address the needs of different groups of people.

How are community organisations adapting to Covid 19? – Greener Kirkcaldy

Greener Kirkcaldy is a community-led charity and Development Trust aiming to benefit local people and the environment. Pre-Covid 19, Greener Kirkcaldy was delivering projects to meet the needs and aspirations of local people: tackling fuel and food poverty, protecting and enjoying the environment, and bringing the community together. These included projects working on Food, Growing, Waste Reduction, Climate Change, Energy and Transport. In this case study, they tell us how they have adjusted to the lockdown and their plans for the future.

Read ‘How are community organisations adapting to Covid 19? – Greener Kirkcaldy’ here

How are community organisations adapting to Covid-19? Moray Food Plus

Moray Food Plus (MFP) are the community food anchor organisation in the area, pre-lockdown they ran a wide range of services: emergency food, community larders, food recovery (including food from Fareshare), cooking skills courses, community meals, lunch club, Holibub (school holiday club), food growing as well as cooking and well being sessions with families.  While other agencies in the area also carry out food activities, such as lunch clubs, MFP is the only dedicated community food initiative in the area and supplies other organisations with recovered food.  They are part of the Fairer Moray Forum which has produced a local Poverty Strategy, and they were also involved in developing a Food Poverty Action Plan.

Read ‘How are community organisations adapting to Covid-19? Moray Food Plus’ here

Fife Health and Social Care Partnership – using a pragmatic approach

Lyndsay Clark from Fife Health and Social Care was a member of the CFHS cooking skills evaluation study group. In this case study, Lyndsay tells us what learning inspired her most and what changes she has since made to her own work to use  a more pragmatic approach to cooking skills.

Read ‘Fife Health and Social Care Partnership – using a pragmatic approach’ here

Apex Stranraer – How does food and food work contribute to criminal justice programmes?

Work with offenders, or those at risk of offending can be varied, for example, offering support that diverts people from criminal activity, helping people adjust to life outside prison or offering alternatives to custody so that people can pay back to …

Read ‘Apex Stranraer – How does food and food work contribute to criminal justice programmes?’ here

Pathfinder Dogs – cooking skills courses for people who are blind or partially sighted

Anne Royle founded Pathfinder Dogs as a charity in 2003 in Lanarkshire with the aim of training and providing German shepherd dogs throughout the UK as guide dogs for people who are blind or partially sighted. Anne, who is blind herself had discovered there was a long waiting list for those who prefer German shepherds as guide dogs, so set up this unique dog training programme.

Read ‘Pathfinder Dogs – cooking skills courses for people who are blind or partially sighted’ here

Edinburgh Community Food

Chris Mantle from Edinburgh Community Food (ECF) was a member of the CFHS Cooking skills evaluation study group. This practitioner group met several times over two years to plan an evaluation project involving eight organisations running community cooking skills courses (the final report ‘Chopping and Changing’ from the study group is available here).  In this case study, Chris explains how learning from the study itself, or networking with others has shifted his thinking about how he (and his colleagues at ECF) run cooking skills courses.

Read ‘Edinburgh Community Food’ here

Forth Valley Sensory Centre – cooking skills courses for people who are blind or partially sighted

The Forth Valley Sensory Centre in Falkirk has been running popular cooking courses for people with visual loss. The classes began last year, led by the Centre’s Café Cook – David Black, who is blind himself. This case study looks at what he achieved and what challenges he had to overcome.

Read ‘Forth Valley Sensory Centre – cooking skills courses for people who are blind or partially sighted’ here

Confidence to Cook – training the trainers: improving evaluation skills to improve cooking skills courses

Fiona Matthew from the NHS Grampian Confidence to Cook programme took part in the CFHS cooking skills evaluation study group. In this case study, Fiona explains what she learned most from being part of the study group, what learning she passed onto others and in turn, what impact it had on their work.

Read ‘Confidence to Cook – training the trainers: improving evaluation skills to improve cooking skills courses’ here

The Youth Community Support Agency

Using food and cooking to make a difference for young asylum seekers and refugees in Glasgow Background The Youth Community Support Agency (YCSA) supports young people (aged 10 to 25 years) from black and ethnic minority backgrounds in Glasgow, helping …

Read ‘The Youth Community Support Agency’ here

Self-evaluation programme – Windmills Cafe

About the café Based in Motherwell town centre, Windmills, Café with a Conscience, (WC) began trading in 2010. It was established to support the development of independent living skills and provide meaningful work experience and training opportunities …

Read ‘Self-evaluation programme – Windmills Cafe’ here

Self-evaluation programme – Sycamore Tree Cafe

About the café The Sycamore Tree Café (STC) is based within Davison’s Mains Church in West Edinburgh. The café was set up to be a community hub, providing a safe and welcoming space for everyone in the community. It is open three days a week, plus one …

Read ‘Self-evaluation programme – Sycamore Tree Cafe’ here

Self-evaluation programme – Open Door Cafe

About the café The Open Door (OD) is Edinburgh’s oldest community café. Running since February 1982, it was set up by a number of local churches to provide services for older people who they thought may be suffering from the ‘poverty of loneliness’, be …

Read ‘Self-evaluation programme – Open Door Cafe’ here

Self-evaluation programme – Kate’s Kitchen

Background to the cafe Kate’s Kitchen (KK) is based in Annan in Dumfries and Galloway. The organisation’s aim is to make life better for everyone that comes through the door. It runs a ‘pay what you can’ café which is open to anyone: people using the c …

Read ‘Self-evaluation programme – Kate’s Kitchen’ here

Self-evaluation programme – Community Food Stop

About the Community Food Stop Run by the Kyle of Sutherland Development Trust (KOSDT), the Community Food Stop (CFS) is a weekly café providing a three-course lunch or  a snack, payable by donation. CFS was set up for two purposes: to address social is …

Read ‘Self-evaluation programme – Community Food Stop’ here

Self-evaluation programme – North Edinburgh Arts

About the café North Edinburgh Arts (NEA) is based in Muirhouse, North Edinburgh and opened in 2000. The community café is integral to the centre and is seen as a key way of encouraging local people (and others) into the centre and into taking part in …

Read ‘Self-evaluation programme – North Edinburgh Arts’ here

The Usual Place

The Usual Place (TUP) is a community café based in the centre of Dumfries. It is open weekdays from 9 am – 4 pm and sells a range of drinks, snacks, and meals. The café was established to provide high-quality, strengths-based training around catering a …

Read ‘The Usual Place’ here

West Lothian Council

Delivering cooking groups for other agencies The Get Cooking programme, run by West Lothian Council Health Improvement Team, is a long established programme that offers cooking groups to a wide range of participants. Most often the courses are run for …

Read ‘West Lothian Council’ here

Elgin Youth Cafe

Recruiting people experiencing food insecurity to attend cooking courses Elgin Youth Café is a third sector organisation that aims to create a safe haven, social space and development opportunities for young people. Projects include a youth café, after …

Read ‘Elgin Youth Cafe’ here

Community Food Initiatives North East (CFINE)

Linking in with other organisations CFINE is a social enterprise and charity operating from a hub in Aberdeen. It undertakes a range of food and health activities including running a food bank, selling low-cost produce in local communities, operating F …

Read ‘Community Food Initiatives North East (CFINE)’ here

NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde

Identifying and reaching people who may be experiencing food insecurity John Casey works as a Health Improvement Practitioner for NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde and has a remit for the south of the city. His role includes managing a range of ‘Get Cookin …

Read ‘NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde’ here

Edinburgh Community Food

Adapting recipes to suit the group Edinburgh Community Food is a third sector organisation undertaking a range of food and health work. As well as running and supplying food co-ops across the city, it does a range of development and promotion work, inc …

Read ‘Edinburgh Community Food’ here

Edinburgh Cyrenians Good Food Programme goes to Queen Margaret University

Recently Sue O’Neil-Berest, Good Food tutor, Edinburgh Cyrenians went to Queen Margaret University to run a session on public health issues with the first year nursing students. In the morning the students had lectures about public health legislation a …

Read ‘Edinburgh Cyrenians Good Food Programme goes to Queen Margaret University’ here

Tullibody Healthy Living

Background Tullibody Healthy Living (THL) is a community-led health project where ‘tackling health inequalities’ is at the heart of what it does.  Set up in 2003, it is based in Tullibody, a small ex-mining community of 10,000 people in Clackmannanshir …

Read ‘Tullibody Healthy Living’ here