The Bradford City FC Community Foundation, the charitable arm of Bradford City AFC, have partnered with the Club and Penny Appeal , a charity which provides aid to at-risk people around the world, to provide free food to the most vulnerable members of the Bradford community.
Penny Appeal CEO and Foundation trustee Ridwana Wallace-Laher (left) and Foundation CEO Ian Ormondroyd (right).
Ridwana Wallace-Laher, CEO of Penny Appeal and a trustee for the Community Foundation, said: “We are very excited to be working closely with the Club and the Community Foundation in doing our bit for the community in Bradford. This is an opportunity to provide nourishment for vulnerable people, but tackle the issue of food waste management, which is something I know the Club and the Foundation care deeply about.”
The new scheme, which will utilise a Penny Appeal food truck and the Foundation’s City Hub cafe, will provide food, warmth and shelter this winter. The truck will be placed in front of the City Hub, opposite the iconic University of Bradford stadium, for one hour after BCAFC fixtures on match days. Unused food from the Foundation’s City Hub, the cafe and events space which is open before every BCAFC home game, will be donated to the truck to ensure the elimination of food waste and keep the truck well stocked. The Hub will then remain open as a meeting and collection space for those utilising the truck, with a view of food parcels also being made available for collection.
Foundation CEO and ex-Bantams player, Ian Ormondroyd, said: “Here at the Foundation we are delighted to be working alongside Penny Appeal. The food truck will do crucial work in providing for the underprivileged, vulnerable and at-risk members of our community. Hopefully, by combining our efforts with the Club, Penny Appeal and our City Hub, we can make a real and lasting difference, which not only provides for Bradford’s community members, but allows us to reduce food waste too.”
The truck will also make an appearance every Thursday evening in the same location. Starting on the 11th of January, Penny Appeal’s food truck will be open from 6pm until 6:45pm, with the Hub also remaining open to act as a warm, safe space for those benefiting from the free food on offer to gather, connect and keep out of the elements.
Penny Appeal's food truck will be set up every Thursday evening beside BCAFC's iconic stadium.
Ridwana added: “We are delighted that the City Hub will be opening its doors to coincide with the food truck’s offerings on Thursday evenings. Service users will be able to get a hot meal from the food truck and then have a warm and safe place to eat it.”
The Foundation is in the advanced stages of expanding its food provision initiative, and is working closely with the Bradford Metropolitan Food Bank. The Foundation plans to contribute funds and collate food parcels covering all dietary needs, restrictions and requirements, establishing a food bank at the Hub in conjunction with BCAFC Women’s team.
Bradleigh Pioli, the Foundation’s Head of Events and Commercial and one of the organisers of the recent food drive, said: “We are thrilled to announce our partnership with Penny Appeal and Bradford City Football Club in launching the food truck and food bank initiatives. Together, we aim to expand beyond our match day and Thursday offerings and look toward creating a warm, safe space within the City Hub for the community which runs every week, year round. Our vision includes a multi-organisational team offering support and advice, ensuring that our service not only nourishes bodies but also fosters a sense of community and assistance for those in need.”