Over the last year the Oxford Food Bank has been involved in a project to set up a similar food bank operating in West London called The Felix Project.
It has always been one of the objectives of OFB to replicate our model in other locations throughout the country as we think it is the most sustainable and eco-friendly way of handling ‘food waste’ (as the food industry considers it) combined with reducing food poverty. An opportunity arose to link up with another organisation that was considering setting up a food bank in London and we were more than happy to use our expertise to give them a flying start.
OFB representatives have been involved with this project from the first days, helping them to identify potential local suppliers and charities, and providing information and advice on appropriate operational procedures.
We are very glad to announce that The Felix Project, which has been set up as a completely separate charity in its own right, has now been fully operational for several months with its own enthusiastic team of volunteers (two of whom are shown above), a van, a base, and a handful of suppliers, and charities to take the food to. Shown below are OFB volunteer Liz Buckle (left), and Felix Project Coordinator Anne Elkins (centre) delivering food to the Centre for Armenian Information and Advice in Acton.
At the moment The Felix Project is still our ‘little brother’ in terms of scale and how long it has been operating (OFB is now seven years old) but it is quite possible that within a couple of years they might have expanded to a level where they are supplying even more food to worthy causes than OFB. Only time will tell, but we wish them well for the future, and for the time being they can still rely on ‘big brother’ to be watching them (in a totally non-sinister way) and providing a helping hand when needed.
Anyone else considering setting up a food bank in other parts of the country using the OFB model is welcome to contact us for help and advice.