The brilliant Base on Broadfield!
The Base Community Centre has had a busy and productive few months since the first lockdown back in March.
We almost immediately started an emergency response service, securing funding to provide food parcels to over 40 families on the Broadfield estate. The families were those most in need, and we were supporting upwards of 120 children.
We hand-delivered the parcels, which gave us a chance to do doorstep welfare checks, engage with the children, and spend a few minutes chatting with each family.
Community Cafe and new breakfast club for school children
Leading on from the parcels, we re-opened our Community Café on a takeaway basis. Every Monday, we provide breakfast barms and hot drinks to the local community, and it is all free! The cafe has proved immensely popular, and we regularly serve between 60-100 customers every week.
A local businessman has now funded our Breakfast Club, which provides local school children with a free hot breakfast on their way to school. So we now open at 7:30 am and serve hot chocolate and sausage or bacon butties for any primary or secondary pupils who want something to eat or drink.
The Base One Stop shop
On 14 October, we launched The Base One Stop, which is a membership scheme providing the Broadfield community with access to good quality food at a minimal cost. Predominantly supplied by Fareshare, our members pay just £2.50 per visit (one per week) and in return can select ten items of food of varying value, usually saving between £15-£20 each time they come. It enables them to top-up their weekly shopping, try new foods, and select the odd treat they wouldn't usually be able to afford.
The One Stop is open to anyone. We don't ask any questions about personal circumstances or income. We have been delighted by the community's response and have around 115 members, and numbers are growing each week.
We have started to offer recipes and provide a bag with all the ingredients required, based on whatever surplus stock we have in that week. The recipe bags have proved very popular. People have a little competition each week - members make the recipe and send us photos of the completed dish. We select the best, and the winner gets a free week's shop!
We have lots of exciting plans and ideas for the future once the current Covid-19 restrictions are eased or lifted. But for now, we are certainly being kept on our toes!
Vikki (above) was the One Stop's very first customer!
The Base Community Centre is managed by Key Unlocking Futures and supported by Progress Housing Group, South Ribble Borough Council, The Big Lottery Fund and the Co-op.
Find out more about The Base Community Centre in Broadfield, Leyland on their Facebook page - The Base on Broadfield.