REfuse, a social enterprise, is committed to reducing food wastage. Mim Skinner and Nikki Dravers lead the team that takes in approximately 13 tonnes of unwanted food each month and redistributes it around the region.
It also serves creative dishes at the REfUSE community cafe. It is based in Chester-le-Street. It creates a community for people to make friends and learn new skill.
Its goal is to raise awareness on the climate and ecological impacts of food waste.
REfuses’ pandemic work shifted to include not only the environment, but also food insecurity.
Director Mim said that although climate activism is abstract, it can also be about big changes. It can be difficult to make it meaningful to people, and I feel that I have to do something.
But food is something we all need, and can see and comprehend.
It excites me that 150 volunteers, each day, using their skills and passion, prevent landfill. They also learn how to make a difference and share that knowledge with others.
We thought about how we could help those who were in need during the pandemic. So we prepared approximately 90,000 emergency meals.
The County Durham Together Awards awarded the environment award to the project. The awards were hosted by The Northern Echo and Durham County Council at Ramside Hall Thursday night.
Judges stated: ReFuse cafe demonstrated how it tackles the huge problem of commercial food wastage and distributed it fairly on an affordable-to-pay base. It also helped the community cook and eat healthy.
This group has been able to grow the non-profit without any financial assistance. Food waste is a significant climate and environmental problem.
The entire project is remarkable, especially in terms of addressing climate crisis and waste and tackling food poverty. This self-financing community venture has been a worthy winner.