'Do Drop In' community cafe opened in Sheringham Methodist Church in May 2016. Those who attend enjoy a jacket potato with filling plus dessert and a 'joke of the week'.
The Lunch Club at St Luke's Church in Norwich provides a nutritious two course meal for elderly people in the community, as well as good company and a varied programme of entertainment.
Every Friday, SOUL Church serves a free hot meal to the community – and transport from the city centre so people are able to access it.
The monthly Friends and Neighbours group in Loddon is a place for those who have been widowed, male or female, to share a meal or afternoon tea together as well as support and friendship.
Norwich foodbank is a phenomenon. In the last year it has given out 8,790 food parcels to families in crisis – that represents an amazing 79,100 meals. It also runs school holiday clubs for low income families at multiple sites around greater Norwich.
Last year Thetford Foodbank distributed 719 emergency food packages for 1,397 people living in Norfolk in desperate need - 392 of which were children. This equates to around 13.5 tonnes of food distributed by the team of volunteers.
For women and young people who experience sexual exploitation in Norfolk, The Magdalene Group provides a lifeline. Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday lunchtime they host a drop-in with a hot meal at their homely King Street premises in central Norwich.
The Fountain at Shouldham is a 'fresh expression' of church for those who do not currently belong to a 'traditional' church. The ministry, which regularly involves food, has been running for five years in Shouldham, West Norfolk.
Each week King’s Community Church in central Norwich hosts a Sunday lunch from 2pm – 4pm giving who whose are sleeping rough or have other needs a place of friendship and practical help with laundry facilities and showers available.
St Augustine’s Church in Norwich host a lunch club every Monday for vulnerable members of the community. The club is run by volunteers from the church and from local Christian charity City Saints in Action.
The Lighthouse Community Church in Sheringham offers a community meal every Thursday lunchtime, comprising a two-course set meal for only £5, open to anyone in the community of any age.
The Box is a long-running weekly youth group run by Sprowston Methodist Church every Thursday evening. This year along with the games, group activities and Christian based talk, the team began trialling a free sit down evening meal for the young people.
The Pathway Cafe and Resource Centre based at the Mission Ministry in Great Yarmouth serves around 90 three-course dinners on weekdays plus soup and a one dish main course on Saturdays to the marginalised in the community.
The Community Matters Cafe in Cromer is a free meal facility for anyone in the community, but particularly socially excluded people struggling with issues of finance, substance abuse, poor mental health or the elderly who wrestle with isolation.
In October 2012 the Church of the Nazarene in Thetford began hosting Messy Church. Almost five years later this Messy Church, which always includes a home-cooked evening meal, has become a fully functioning church appealing particularly to families.
MakeLunch @ Jubilee is run by Aylsham Community Church, as part of a national initiative that works with churches to help fill the holiday hunger gap. They offer a free hot meal and fun activities to families struggling on tight budgets.
This food project, run by Christians Against Poverty from Surrey Chapel in Norwich does exactly what it says on the tin...people who are struggling are taken for a food shop!
King’s Lynn Foodbank started in October 2011 as an initiative of Churches Together in King’s Lynn and now feeds over 300 people a month, providing emergency food and support that is clear, practical and full of compassion.
The meal served at Messy Church gives the children and their parents the opportunity to sit down and socialise with other families - it is an activity that is an important part of family life.
The Norwich Soup Run functions every night of the year, with the exception of Christmas day. Based at the Charity Stall at the bottom of the Haymarket, teams of volunteers serve food and drink to people in need.
Feeding up to 60 residents a day at this Norfolk Broads residential activity centre can lead to the problem of surplus food but Centre Manager, Josie Barnett ensures it is not wasted by donating surplus food to Bishopbridge House night shelter in Norwich.
The Well is an outreach of Gorleston Baptist Church offering a place of welcome and community to the most disadvantaged and vulnerable people in the borough of Great Yarmouth, welcoming around 60 people every Monday and Thursday for a three course meal.
Eighteen months ago Andy Cox, a Community Outreach Worker employed one day a week by Cell Church through the Rural Ministries Foundation initiated a Community Lunch in Newton Flotman, which he runs with a team of local volunteers every month.
Poppies Community Café, part of Blofield Church’s community outreach, is open every Wednesday of the year from 10am-12 noon offering friendship and company to those in the Mid Norfolk village who may be lonely and have no one to talk to at home.
Norwich Vineyard church runs two food projects - a weekly Soup Run for Big Issue sellers in Norwich city centre and a monthly Foodstore project, collecting food donations from church members and creating two-day boxes for local families.
About the project
Norfolk Feeds 5000 is a research project which aims to establish the extent to which the Christian community across Norfolk is meeting the simple command of Jesus to "feed the hungry".
Christian churches, groups and individuals across Norfolk meet the needs of the hungry and the thirsty every day of the year through foodbanks, free community meals, homeless projects, soup runs, Messy Church and other activities.
A simple survey has been conducted to attempt to quantify the extent to which this is happening and the findings of the survey will be published here, including many of the stories about the projects which feed people throughout Norfolk.
The project is supported by Celebrate Norfolk, Network Norfolk, Christian Aid, the Diocese of Norwich, Good News for Norwich & Norfolk and Bright Map and is named after the Bible story of the Feeding of The 5000.
If your Christian food-related project is not featured in our case studies and you would like us to include you, please send details, a fact file, a picture and web links to us by clicking here.
The research and reporting team behind NorfolkFeeds5000 is from Network Norwich & Norfolk: Jenny Seal, Helen Baldry, Tony Rothe & Keith Morris.
NF5k projects map
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