Volunteers celebrate 22,000th meal in new ImpACT youth kitchen

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Volunteers celebrate 22,000th meal in new ImpACT youth kitchen

Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis joins Project ImpACT teens to help feed vulnerable members of society.

Pic: Project Impact March 2024
Pic: Project Impact March 2024

A UK volunteering charity organisation that runs community youth kitchens around north west London celebrated its milestone 22,000th meal with a visit from Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis.

The meals prepared at Project ImpACT’s new Youth Kitchen in NW11, the charity’s flagship programme for local food banks and homeless shelters, supports people of all faiths and hundreds of teens come together each week to volunteer.

The Chief Rabbi joined a packed room of enthusiastic students from 28 schools to prepare nutritious food including the 22,000th meal using surplus produce from Barnet Food Hub and The Felix Project.

He said: “I would like to thank all of you for the inspiration that you give to me and to our entire Jewish community. Project ImpACT is one of the most wonderful opportunities that exists for young Jewish people in Britain today. Congratulations to everybody here for making sure it’s such an enormous success and to all of you volunteering your time and your commitment to this amazing project. When you give selflessly to others, you make a positive impact on their lives and also on your own.”

Project ImpACT.

Marcin Nocek, Together in Barnet said: “The food provided by Project ImpACT tonight is going to be delivered to our winter night shelter for people experiencing homelessness.

“This season the food has a double meaning because it’s going to be served as lunch boxes for those homeless people who work and for our Muslim guests who observe Ramadan as a meal to break their fast. It’s incredible how Project ImpACT’s Jewish teens provide healthy meals for those in need and supporting our clients from all faiths”.

Project ImpACT.

Teen volunteers also heard from Marilyn, a client of Together in Barnet’s night shelter who said: “I want to commend you on the wonderful work you are doing. You are indeed making a great impact on us homeless people. I have been using the night shelter for four weeks and have been street homeless since last November. Being homeless, we all need to have proper food because we are on the move all the time and the food you provide for us is the energy to keep us moving and to help keep us warm.

“I would like to reiterate what the Chief Rabbi said: action speaks louder than words and your actions are speaking louder than words. Your choice of vegetarian meals helps us to cater for the dietary needs of people of different faiths. It’s amazing to see young people with such a good heart and humanitarian heart. I thank you all very much on behalf of all the people in the shelter.”

Founder and director of Project ImpACT, Chayli Fehler said: “We are proud of everything that Project ImpACT has achieved and are delighted to have
reached this incredible milestone. Our volunteers are the driving force behind the ImpACT Youth Kitchen, their enthusiasm, dedication, and desire to make a positive impact is inspiring. Our vision is for all Jewish teenagers to be actively involved in social action and volunteering as part of their journey into adulthood, contributing to their community and beyond.”

Since 2020 more than 3,000 teens have volunteered 32,000 hours of their time. Volunteering hours can be credited towards the Duke of Edinburgh Awards.

To get involved in volunteering with Project ImpACT, click here.

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