Cooking up an idea to help those in need

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The Soul Fillers launch party at Camp and Furnace. Pic © JMU Journalism

A new catering company marked its inception and vision to help others with a night of music and dining at Camp and Furnace.

Soul Fillers is the brainchild of Sky Glover and her partners at Moving On With Life & Learning (MOWLL). They aim to provide a quality catering service, as well as opportunities for local people with learning difficulties and mental health conditions.

Ms Glover, 38, told JMU Journalism: “It’s all about social inclusion and providing people with opportunities.”

The Soul Fillers official launch party last party was held last week, complete with a three-course meal prepared by their chefs, a canapé reception, and a tasty selection of live musical performances.

The idea and organisation was formed when Ms Glover, a director at Happy Go Cooking CIC, began putting on a cooking class as a means of ‘giving something back’ to her community.

Video: Matty Davies

 

She said: “MOWLL contacted me about teaching some of their service users in what would initially be a ten-week course, which ended up running for two years.

“My students’ confidence started to grow as a result; some of them went from not being comfortable leaving their house to meeting me in town for a beer.

Ms Glover currently works with around 30 MOWLL service users. At the launch party, they worked in shifts with some of them preparing the food whilst others served the guests. Members of the Soul Fillers team have conditions including Cerebral Palsy, Schizophrenia and Autism.

Soul Fillers chefs at the Camp and Furnace launch party. Pic © JMU Journalism

She said: “We don’t receive any government funding. We’re aiming to build a sustainable business that delivers disability awareness and quality service.

“As a society, we need to start making room for everyone. Some of the Soul Fillers members can’t work 40 hours per week in a restaurant, but they can do four or five hours at a catering event like this though.”

All of the money raised by Soul Fillers will be paid to members of the team or used to fund future events and to grow the business.

With some exciting ideas and projects lined up for the future, Soul Fillers looks set to be more than just a flash in the pan.

Sky told JMU Journalism: “We’ve got a beer festival planned for March where we’re going to launch our own beer with Mad Hatters Brewery, and in the summer we want to hold a festival at Camp and Furnace.”