Preston Windrush Generation: Volunteers serving soul food to vulnerable search for permanent base


A group of volunteers made up of the Windrush generation and their descendants who have been delivering meals to elderly and vulnerable people in Preston say they're desperate to find a permanent home for their work.

Since March, they've put closed community centre kitchens to good use, cooking up big batches of soul food and dropping them to around 160 people all around Preston.

It's paid for by donations, and delivered by volunteers.

The volunteers feed around 160 people a week. Credit: ITV News

The coordinator, Glenda Andrew, says they want to help anyone in need, both in and out of the Afro-Caribbean community.

She added "It doesn't matter a bit what colour skin you have, I'm telling you now, if you need a meal, pick up the phone and contact us."

A lot of seniors that live here in the UK, and made the UK their home, a lot of their other family are in the Carribbean, their children may live far away, there's no one seeing them. I want to make sure that they've had something, and they're not alone.

Glenda Andrew
Cooked in closed community centre kitchens, volunteers then deliver the food to those who are vulnerable or shielding.

It's a massive community effort. While Glenda and her volunteers are busy preparing meals at the centre, Glenda's mum Paullette cooks up dozens of portions of her famous fish recipe from her own kitchen.

Although shielding at home, the 79 year old has never stopped giving to others.

When you put love in it, it makes a difference, and when you see people appreciate it and enjoying it, that's the main thing. It's better to give than to receive, so I certainly don't mind giving my time.

Paullette Andrew

Anthony Small, who's been receiving meals from the beginning, says the weekly delivery is a weight off his shoulders.

"I'm unemployed, I'm a victim of circumstances, that's why I'm in this position. With this virus, you don't know what to do.  It's very appreciated - and better than what you'd get in the takeaway for a start!"

The group say a permanent centre would be a huge boost to Afro-Caribbean people in the town. Credit: ITV News

The group have had to relocate twice throughout the pandemic, although they have now been lent the use of the Xaverian Mission Spirituality Centre.

Going forwards, Preston Windrush Generation and Desendants want to expand the work they do, and are desperately hoping to find a suitable permanent centre.

Glenda hopes that, as well as more meal provision, it will be a one-stop shop for those affected by the Windrush scandal, so they can have access to advocacy and other advice groups.

"A lot of people have been doing a lot of this work for years. We need somewhere where people can go and get advice, and meet people form their own community providing that service."


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