Cook4Care continue their recipe for success
Cook4Care’s team of volunteer cooks arrive at the kitchens of Esher Rugby Club early each morning to prepare and cook healthy and nutritious meals for young carers across Elmbridge. Their army of volunteer drivers deliver home-cooked meals, and some welcome company, to homes where children and young adults are the registered carers.
Last year, we awarded a Community Grant of £4,000 to Cook4Care, enabling them to reach more young carers and their families here in Elmbridge. Since expanding their service, Cook4Care have cooked a staggering 3,690 meals for Elmbridge families, saving young carers 4,144 hours in shopping and cooking time.
The result - young carers have more time for their studies and to spend with friends and family, reducing feelings of loneliness and isolation.
One in four adults feel lonely some or all of the time. There’s no single cause and there’s no one solution but, the longer we feel lonely, the more we are at risk of physical and mental health problems. Being a carer is one of the factors that can increase loneliness and affect mental health.
Addressing loneliness and isolation is one of Walton Charity’s five priorities and we fund projects that support people’s mental health, encourage social interaction and help people feel more connected to their community.
As a result of Cook4Care’s work, Action for Young Carers Surrey has reported an increase in the emotional and physical resilience of the young carers who are benefitting from trying new foods and receiving respite from their caring responsibilities.
As one volunteer said, “I feel a sense of pride that I am volunteering for such a worthy cause. There is such a direct local benefit, and we get lovely messages from the families.”