Meals on wheels: fighting food poverty in Bristol

by Crowdfunder | May 10, 2022 | Stories

Meals on wheels: fighting food poverty in Bristol

By developing a ‘Real Meals on Wheels’ food shop to deliver healthy food and locally grown produce to their community, the Heart of BS13 aimed to help fight food poverty in the city. 

Based in Bristol, the Heart of BS13 is on a mission to support a healthy community in their postcode. As a social enterprise, they have a number of projects to help them reinvest in their area, including a community garden and kitchen, a climate action plan, and a goal to turn a local city farm into a thriving hub.

As the heart and soul of their area, they have seen first hand the struggles many face in the vicinity, with 1 in 8 households experiencing food poverty. This inspired them to develop a ‘Real Meals on Wheels’ initiative to sell affordable food options to the community. This would help lower income families and those without transport to access ready-made, high quality meals from their kitchen, along with locally grown fresh fruit and vegetables from their garden and staples like bread, milk, eggs and meat. 

To get their new initiative off the ground, they needed £10,000 which they hoped to raise on Crowdfunder. This money would go towards a low carbon e-cargo bike with a refrigerated store which could travel the streets of Bristol. 

Jodie Smith, Food Security Programme Lead at the Heart of BS13, told us, “We decided to crowdfund because another part of our organisation had successfully completed a Crowdfunder campaign and reached their target – so we were inspired to run one for our food security programme of work!”

Within 42 days, their crowd of 146 people had raised £10,277 and an estimated £494.25 in Gift Aid. This included £5,000 of funding from the Sovereign Thriving Communities Fund which supports projects that benefit Sovereign communities. They also received an additional £2,675 from the Aviva Community Fund

Jodie explained, “The crowdfunding experience has been brilliant and has meant that we have raised the funds to implement a targeted food hardship initiative. It means that we can help more families have access to quality food at affordable prices in BS13.”

She continued, “The generous donation from Sovereign Housing was key to the success of our Crowdfunder. They enabled us to reach our target quicker and exceed it. The Crowdfunder journey would have been more challenging to achieve without their support.” 

In the months since their project closed, the Heart of BS13 team have been busy getting everything ready for the launch of Meals on Wheels. She told us, “The project is launching in March 2022 as we are currently having our bespoke E-cargo Bike built.”

Needless to say, we can’t wait to hear an update once they’ve fully launched to the public! To help more organisations who are using this method of fundraising to make their dreams a reality, we asked for Jodie’s top crowdfunding tips.

“Having creative and interesting rewards to offer was a real draw for donors. For instance our supper clubs were a great success, and generated a good number of donations via the ticket sales. Plus it meant that we actually got to meet and engage with our supporters which was wonderful! We also invested in having a compelling video made about the project and our story. We feel this was crucial to running our successful crowdfunding campaign as potential supporters could immediately see what we were trying to achieve!” 

Feeling inspired? Find out if you could receive up to £10,000 from the Sovereign Thriving Communities fund!

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