One of the main reasons Wivey Grows was set up was to start growing food for our community. Particularly through these times of turbulence, a cost-of-living crisis, climate change, repercussions from covid, disrupted supply chains, impact of war - normal everyday food is becoming unaffordable, particularly fresh vegetables.
All over the country and certainly within Somerset, there are "food & nutrition deserts". That means you have to drive sometimes miles to find a fresh vegetable and the only food around for you and your family is high in sugar, saturated fat and highly processed junk. Food that just about gets us through the day, but won't be helping our energy levels, our cognitive brain function and our physical and mental health.
It's more important than ever that we focus on improving our food resilience together. We must think local and seasonal with multicoloured, highly nutritious, delicious, fresh food. If we grow it here, not only are our food supplies less impacted by what is happening nationally and globally, but we become physically and mentally more resilient too.
When the pandemic started an incredible team of volunteers started the Wivey Food Project (now called Wivey Kitchen). This group takes fresh, high-quality, surplus food that was destined for landfill, and cooks delicious, nutritious food for free or a small donation for our community every week. This food is then distributed to freezers around the community for people to pick up or hand-delivered to individuals and families by a dedicated team of drivers.
In the past 2 years, they have cooked a staggering 60,000 meals! That's nearly 500 meals a week!
Last year we started growing Wivey Grows vegetables for the food project and every week our harvest went into their soups, stews, roasts and more. Team Flowers started picking beautiful bouquets they had grown from seeds which were then sent out with food deliveries - so people receiving food would also get a beautiful bunch of flowers!
This year Wivey Grows have been awarded a grant to increase our food production for this growing season. We are now able to grow more at Langley House, which Wivey Growers will be able to pick and enjoy each week, whilst the majority will go straight to Wivey Kitchen to feed our neighbours.
Using this grant, Team Veg have come up with an incredible sowing and growing plan with interesting, varied, wacky and colourful vegetables, fruits and herbs - some you will know and some you won't! Come and learn how to grow with us, whether it's just for one session or as a regular - take away ideas and techniques, learn next to those who have been doing it for years, get your hands in the soil. This is what we will be doing every Saturday for the next few weeks and from May, we will be meeting every Thursday 6-8pm.
Everyone is welcome to come, learn and grow - then we can feast and share the harvest together! What could be better!