The Power of Community
We continue to support local social enterprises, business and charities by sharing our suprlus veg and gifting veg bags to local casues. This month our 'love for local' came in the form of Becky and Katie from The Local Squeeze. We are delighted to be sharing our veg with their comunity, and were happy to be able to support and connect with other enterprises along the way. It's incredibly apt that this months blog focuses on the 'power of community' and how a city as vast and dense as London still oozes a true community spirit.
In this day and age we seem to have lost touch with the food that we eat. We live in such a fast paced society that we tend to buy food on the run, eat ready meals and don’t seem to spare a thought for where our produce comes from.
We mustn’t forget how food has been a uniting factor throughout history, bringing us together since we were hunters and gatherers. Securing food in groups was one of the main reasons for the start of cultivating land, building villages and communities.
Living in a large city such as London it is easy to detach from this, with the likes of fast food apps and chain restaurants all over the city. I have a friend who is not originally from London but has chosen to reside here. She says her love for London comes because each borough is similar to a small village. It’s polycentric, each neighbourhood has its own identity, individual smells and sights, interesting people and unique architecture.
There is a sense of community to be found if you are willing to make the time to shop, eat and grow locally. There are many projects going on here in South East London. I have found a place to reconnect with food, a little community café, where it's not just a place to eat but there is a stronger community tie with an open door policy. The Platform Café in Loughborough Junction grows its own food, welcomes volunteers, offers cheap healthy food and has food waste fighting goals.
My friend Becky and I felt so inspired after volunteering at the café and at its connected urban farm that it inspired us to start our own food enterprise – The Local Squeeze. From the start we have partnered with many local organisations, including Local Greens where we use some lovely organic produce to cook at the café. Working together and being apart of a local food network is extremely empowering.
Food is powerful. It brings us together, shapes our memories, and empowers the community. Though easy to forget while we’re rushing through our day, cooking and or sharing a meal is an intimate experience and those who sit beside us at the table will feel this connection.
By Katie Reid (The Local Squeeze)