A community kitchen will be providing free meals for Thanet families this Summer

Cllr Barry Lewis with Sharon Goodyer of Our Kitchen on the Isle of Thanet

A community kitchen offering free meals for families in need, both eat in and takeaway,  will open for the Summer at a Margate primary school.

Our Kitchen on the Isle of Thanet has teamed up with Drapers Mills school, Get Out Get Active (GOGA) Thanet, Fareshare, Asda, Windmill Allotments, Geoff Philpott’s farm, Your Leisure and county councillor Barry Lewis to offer the meals and activities scheme throughout August.

Cllr Lewis has provided start up funds for a team of six professionals and a small army of volunteers who will be serving up roast chicken dinners, roasted vegetable tagine with cous cous, beetroot chocolate cake, flapjack with added apple and carrot , Appleberry to go with yogurt and Kulfi -a sumptuous ice cream from the Middle East.

The aim is to get the community together to enjoy the meals, with those who can afford it making a donation, and to have fun in a variety of activities.

Our Kitchen on the Isle of Thanet boss Sharon Goodyer said: “The restaurant and take away are free. We hope that most people will put in a donation but for those who need it to be free, it is. We are not fixing the price for dinner we are just saying ‘ have a good evening, play family rounders, watch or join in art and craft activities, enjoy eating a delicious, freshly cooked meal with lots of local veg and fruit in it.’

“Please then make a donation which will help us to keep cooking all summer.’ Thanet  feeds  itself better’ is our strapline.

“We are really excited to be able to offer this lovely thing.”

Drapers Mills school are giving the use their site for free, Fareshare , ASDA , Geoff Philpott’s farm and the Windmill allotments are providing some of the ingredients.  Your Leisure has designed banners and flyers  and the Get Out Get Active team, led by Sarah Johnson, are laying on  family rounders as well as crafty and arty things to do.

The team will also be delivering takeaway meals  in bulk to St Christopher’s  Church in Newington and to a site in Cliftonville, yet to be confirmed.

Sharon said: “Times are quite hard at the moment for some families. Every family experiences times when they need support. This is one way we can all enjoy ourselves, eat well , get a bit of fun exercise  and then  make a donation for a good value dinner for our own family and also look after all the children in Thanet.

“It is frankly daft to give a lot of children in Thanet a free school meal during term time and then just forget about them during the holidays.”

Our Kitchen in Thanet will be holding a training evening on Monday, July 23 at Drapers Mills school from 6pm-8pm. If you would like to be more than a guest diner and  be a part of running the Summer Kitchen just turn up to the session. Volunteers can do as much or as little to help as they want during the scheme.

Sharon said: “We would love as many volunteers as possible to hand out flyers,  cook, serve, welcome our diners, answer the phone, collect the vegetables, demonstrate a craft, play rounders or just be a friendly face to chat to.

“We hope people will ring and book so we have at least some idea how many we are cooking for.”

The community kitchen will be an alcohol and drugs free area.

It will run every Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 6pm to 8pm from July 30 to August 31.

To book or find out more call 01843 223989 or visit the Our Kitchen on the Isle of Thanet facebook page here