(Left to Right) James Seddon, Jordan Brunt, Logan Jones, Dylan Lunn, Alicia Farnsworth, Jamie Jordan

Food for Thought: Catering and Hospitality Students Cook Essential Meals for Locals in Need

4 December 2020

Rotherham College Catering and Hospitality students with a passion for community spirit have been busy cooking up hot meals and preparing food packages to provide essential food support to those less fortunate.

The students, who train at Rotherham College’s public restaurant The Wharncliffe, have provided chicken curries, rice and onion bhajis, pies peas and gravy as well as cold packages including sandwiches, fruit pots, and cakes to local charity Rotherham Independent Volunteer Organisation (RIVO).

The dishes were chosen on account of them being nutritious and tasty as well as testing the students’ food prep and cookery skills. The hot food was served at RIVO’s street kitchen on College Street, while the cold packages were delivered to those who weren’t able to make into the town centre.

The Wharncliffe’s Restaurant Manager John Deehan was delighted to be supporting a local community project.

John said: “Rotherham College has a strong focus on the local community and raising awareness of some of the social issues that exist in our town with our students; we encourage students throughout their college experience to support good causes. Despite the restaurant being closed to the public due to lockdown, our students have continued learning and cooking. Working with RIVO has provided the perfect opportunity for the dishes we create to go to good use and really make a difference in the community.”

John continued: “We are looking to continue supporting RIVO throughout December and help make Christmas a little better for members of our community who are in need.”

Rotherham College Level 1 Catering and Hospitality student Logan Jones, who hopes to be a Restaurant Manager after completing his course, was humbled to be part of the project.

He said: “Any way that a charity can be helped is incredibly important so those that need help can get it. Even if it’s something as small as a packed lunch, it can make such a difference to someone who isn’t able to afford it themselves. We’ve worked with RIVO to provide nice tasty meals to those who need them.”

RIVO’s Chair, Jessica Earnshaw said all the support they get is gratefully received.

Jessica said: “The support from the college has been absolutely incredible and the food has gone down very well. We’ve been serving people food for 18 months now and rely on donations from everyone – from generous individuals to big companies like Greggs.

“Our food is served Tuesday-Friday 5:30-6:30pm from College Street in Rotherham next-door to Specsavers. People come to us for help from all walks of life; some are homeless and there are others who have recently fallen on hard times and have lost their jobs through various circumstances. COVID-19 is having such an impact on the people of Rotherham.

“Our aim is to help people towards a better quality of life and that includes local food parcels, housing, alcohol and drug rehabilitation, benefits support and much more. We’re always on the lookout for volunteers and donations so please get in touch if you can help.”

Those looking to support the charity can call 07394507938, email rivorothertherham@outlook.com or search for Rotherham Independent Volunteer Organisation on Facebook.


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