Helping to build a community, self-confidence and craft skills

Tremorfa’s volunteer run community pantry is holding a series of craft workshops to help locals in the run up to Christmas.

Jenny Ashton (Pantry Lead) and Michelle Williams (Deputy Lead) held a candle making workshop this Thursday

Tremorfa Community Pantry are running a series of fundraiser events for their food bank, in the run up to Christmas, that will offer a focal point for local people to meet and socialise.

This past Thursday, the Pantry, which feeds up to 130 households per week, held a candle making session, open to anyone in the community interested in attending. The purposes of these sessions go far beyond a free candle, a chat and a social outlet being more important.

“We have a bit of a play around with stuff, but really it’s just a social space to give people an excuse to get out of the house, come down, have a coffee and meet people, we’re not very formal…or organized,” joked Pantry Lead Jenny Ashton.

“A lot of people get stuck in a rut and with covid, lockdowns and everything else, a lot of people don’t have the confidence to go out and socialise, there’s lots of people who are very shy when they come here first, we want to try and help them come out of their shell,” said Jenny.

 The Pantry has been running craft days, food shares, toy exchanges as well as many other events on a weekly basis to help local people in a historically deprived part of Cardiff. This coming Saturday there will be a Christmas Wreath workshop.

The Pantry hosts craft events sourced from cheap items found around the house every Thursday

The Pantry is entirely self-funded and organises events weekly on a Thursday morning that act as fundraisers. However, the Pantry’s main focus is on serving the wider community, as it functions as a food bank on Wednesday mornings.

The Pantry has been in operation as a food bank since 2019, initially starting out as a fridge and two shelves, feeding about 20 people per week with reclaimed food that would otherwise be destined for the landfill.

Today, the Pantry feeds between 120 to 130 households per week, which is about 350 people from the local community. “It doesn’t matter who you are, the queen could walk through that door, and she’d leave with the same bag of food as a homeless person, our view is that it shouldn’t go in the bin, it’d be better in someone’s belly,” said Jenny.

“We try our hardest to make the Pantry free for everyone, these events go a long way to letting us keep it that way,” said Michelle Williams, Pantry Deputy Lead

The emphasis within the Pantry is entirely based on positivity and giving back to the local community. “We just want to get people down, give them help, build their confidence, share our skills, keep food away from landfills, and make things more affordable for people,” Jenny said.

The Pantry operates thanks to the devotion of a team of volunteers

With all the good work being done by the community volunteers in the Pantry, the broad vision is clear. To sum it up, Jenny said that, “Tremorfa gets a bad rep I think we just get forgotten about, over this way, east Cardiff has always had a bad rep, we just want to make it nicer around here, raise our profile and make it a friendlier place to live.”

To keep up to date with other events being held please the Pantry’s Facebook and Twitter.