Tudor Lodge No 7280 have joined with the charity Compassion London to set up the TudorFood Initiative – a scheme to distribute fresh meals to vulnerable individuals and families in the Watford area.
Compassion London has already been supplying vulnerable people and key workers in London but were looking to extend their capacity and reach, so Tudor Lodge took on the challenge to bring this to Watford.
Their combined efforts have been aided by the Football Association and owners of Wembley Stadium, who donated the use of the Wembley Stadium Central Production Kitchens to Compassion London (UPDATE: production has now moved to Alexandra Palace as Wembley Stadium will be reopening soon). Lodge member, Harry Lomas, who is also the Culinary Chef at Wembley Stadium and usually the manager of a team of 250 chefs, agreed to lead the kitchen management with a volunteer team of 25 chefs and 200 food production and driver volunteers. Lodge Secretary, Peter Young took on the job of contacting local charitable groups and arranging deliveries of the meals in Watford.
On the first day, orders were taken for over 350 meals per week and, by Day 4, over 1,100 meals were arranged for supply every week. The main recipients are the Watford Borough Council Food Hubs (operated by One Vision Project and Sewa Day), who are supporting vulnerable families, local schools and care homes; two local Hospices (Peace Hospice Care and Michael Sobell Hospice); a disabled children’s charity (Kids West HUB); a charity supporting the homeless (New Hope) and one family via the Watford & Three Rivers Refugee Partnership.
The fresh meals are supplied boxed and labelled with the ingredients and reheating instructions and can be popped in a microwave for a few minutes to get a nutritious meal.
The operation will continue as long as Compassion London continue to receive donations of fresh, raw produce. With requests for fresh meals still coming in from local charitable groups; Tudor Lodge is looking at how the TudorFood initiative can be expanded for the continued support of local vulnerable families.