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We recently spent a day with Made In Hackney assisting in their kitchen to prepare meals for those in the local community.

Established in 2012, MIH is a vegan community cookery school and charity, in Stamford Hill, part of which provides meals to individuals, particularly those less physically mobile, and local food banks among others. We have offered some financial support in the past but thought it was time to get a better flavour of how things run there.

We were warmly welcomed by Flo, head chef, and the rest of the MIH team along with 3 other regular volunteers and having donned our aprons (yes I did pretend I’d just got through the initial round on Master Chef) we set about food prepping for the 100 plus meals we would be preparing.  It all seemed to work very smoothly as we chopped onions, garlic, cauliflowers, broccoli and tomatoes not really knowing what delights Flo had in store for the recipients.

The kitchen soon filled with a lovely smell as more and more ingredients were bubbling and cooking away and we were very impressed by the laid back and yet obviously well organised team that were calmly getting the job done. We even had the chance to appreciate Flo’s  singing and dance moves as the music playlist threw out some classics.

Time really did fly by and before we knew it the call for lunchtime rung out and we all sat around for a fantastic pasta dish that Flo had, somehow, been cracking on with amidst the main job in hand.

It is always great to chat with other volunteers, different nationalities and from all walks of life, to find out why they chose to help out and it’s a great confirmation regarding the amount of good will and generosity that is out there especially when much of the daily news is less positive.

Once we had finished all the prepping, had a good tidy up and with the food ready (Lentil soup and vegetable pasta)  it was time for container labelling before filling  and bagging up in time for the delivery drivers (more volunteers all on bicycles) to pitch up, pack up and set off like paper boys on their delivery rounds. Yet more vital cogs that are crucial in ensuring the smooth running of the operation.

It isn’t until you see first-hand the number of people involved and coordination required that you can truly appreciate the huge effort that goes into running all these great organisations.

After that it was washing up, cleaning down the surfaces and a good hoover to leave it sparkly clean for the next session.  Then a fond farewell to all and hopefully another visit soon. A great and rewarding day.

We can highly recommend this experience to individuals and corporates alike. You will have a great day out and, of course, get fed well too. You can even take over the kitchen for a full works day out if required. So do get in touch.

Thanks to you all for a lovely experience and keep up the fantastic work you do.

Find out more about Made In Hackney and how you can help:

Made In Hackney

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