There with you: A Stable ‘school’ lunch for families in need

The lunches ready to be delivered.

The lunches ready to be delivered. - Credit: Archant

More than 2,000 slices of bread have been buttered by a Weston café which has been giving out packed lunches to children since before the schools closed due to the coronavirus.

The lunches are prepared at one of Weston's newest eateries.

The lunches are prepared at one of Weston's newest eateries. - Credit: Archant

The Mercury reported in mid-March that staff at The Stable, which had recently opened on the site of the former The Heritage café in Wadham Street, were keen to help children from low-income families who are entitled to free school meals.

Managers Jemma Coles and Prayag Rajpura were worried children in the town might not have access to food as they are entitled to free school meals but not all schools were offering a packed-lunch alternative.

And since The Stable was forced to close following Government guidelines, it has been even busier, providing more than 1,000 meals, delivered in batches of two or three days’ worth at a time, to those who have asked for help.

Prayag said: “We have to cap it at three days, as we are getting bread from Winnie’s, which is free from additives so would not last more than three days.

The lunches contain all the essentials.

The lunches contain all the essentials. - Credit: Archant

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“We plan to carry on for as long as we can, but we have relied so far on donations of food and money and deliveries of stock from cafés and other businesses which were also forced to close.

“We have been helping people who may have three children in different schools, so it’s not possible to travel to them all to pick up food or vouchers, plus families who do not know where to turn for help.”

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The lunches provided include a ham or cheese sandwich and snacks including fruit, cereal bars, yoghurt, jelly, crisps and biscuits.

Prayag is now asking for businesses able to sponsor or provide food to contact him via the café’s Facebook page, along with anyone who needs help with getting their children fed while isolated at home.

Prayag added: “Thank you to everyone who has helped us provide this service. We have had an amazing community response so far.”

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