The UK’s first social supermarket has announced a partnership with surplus food charity FootCycle.
Community Shop, which was launched in 2013 by Company Shop owner John Marren, will work with FoodCycle to stop food going to landfill and help residents in socially deprived areas.
Community Shop launched in Goldthorpe, South Yorkshire, in December 2013 as the UK’s first social supermarket.
It now operates two stores – in Goldthorpe and Lambeth, South London – which operate on a membership basis and are open to people in receipt of welfare support, who live in socio-economically deprived communities.
Members have access to low-cost supermarket stocked with high-quality surplus food from leading retailers and brands, including Marks and Spencer, Asda, Tesco, Morrisons, Ocado, Mondelēz, Nestlé, Tetley, Young’s and Muller.
As well as access to cheap, quality food, the stores provide personalised support services, including help with CV writing, employability, home budgeting and debt management.
Community Shop has plans to expand its network across the country.
The supermarket will now also host FoodCycle Hubs in each of its stores, adding to the current network of 20 around the UK.
FoodCycle Hubs volunteers cook three-course meals for the vulnerable in the local community at no cost.
At Community Shop, volunteers from both organisations will prepare and cook meals for up to 40 of each store’s members.
Volunteers, including store members, will also take on leadership roles in the project.