Meals with love

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Volunteers cooked 560 meals for people in Queenstown going through difficult times last month.

In another show of the community’s heart, a new spin-off from resort charity Baskets of Blessing has hit the ground running.

‘Let’s Eat!’ provides nutritious home-cooked meals for those in need, organiser Tam Schurmann says.

“We were delivering these gifts of love, the [Baskets of Blessing] hampers, to people going through a crisis and realising they were really needing practical support.

“There’s not much of that out there, although Happiness House do a wonderful job.”

Schurmann – Mountain Scene’s Queenstowner of the Year 2017 – says a crisis could be sickness, losing a job, bereavement, separation, or a variety of other reasons.

“It isn’t just for those in financial need, it’s for anyone finding life is hard. It can be people doing well for themselves but a circumstantial crisis means they need extra community support.”

The charity soft-launched earlier mid-June and then officially launched on July 23.

In July, it produced 560 meals to help more than 30 families a week, offering a selection of three meat dishes, two vegetarian and even catering for dietary requirements such as gluten-free.

“Countdown supermarket is kindly providing us with surplus food, and Wakatipu Presbyterian Church is providing use of its kitchen facilities.”

Volunteers cook meals, which are then frozen and delivered by the bag full. The charity is fundraising for a freezer trailer, although Queenstown Ice (Richard Scott) has provided use of his in the interim, and fundraising for pantry supplies, oil, stock, etc.

The Warehouse has committed to supplying some kitchen equipment, Enya-Rose and Southern Hospitality Queenstown have provided aprons, and Whitelaw Mitchell’s helped with branding and web presence, and Erik’s Fish and Chips is donating oil and other goods.

Since the official launch on July 23, 90 more people have contacted Schurmann offering to help. The project has received 6000 likes on Facebook and raised $635 on Givealittle.

“We make it very flexible for people to be able to help.

“Sometimes we have young mums come in with their little ones, and we have chat-and-chop sessions, where people catch up with their friends while doing something for the community.”

Google ‘Givealittle Let’s Eat’ to donate or visit Baskets of Blessing website for help.