A free slap-up Christmas meal was served to pensioners and disadvantaged people from across Leicester by university students and other volunteers.
De Montfort University Leicester’s #DMUlocal team organised the festive party on Friday at the West End Community Centre in Andrewes Street.
Gordon Tyler, from Glenfield, was one of the guests who were treated to a festive roast meal, followed by a raffle and other entertainment.
The 84-year-old said: “It’s been very good. They did very well serving the food. I was wondering who they were at first. It was nice to see everybody together.”
#DMUlocal is part of the university’s Square Mile scheme which involves student and staff volunteers using their skills to take part in various projects with the wider community.
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The university paid for the festive event, linking up with the community centre, with The Real Junk Food Project which cooked the meal and with The Shires pub in Peatling Parva, which provided the cooked meat.
Final year Psychology student Nabeelah Ahmed Omarjee, 21, from Zimbabwe, was one of more than 25 students from #DMUlocal who volunteered to help run the party.
“It was a great opportunity to give something back to the community,” she said. “It’s those little things in life that make people happy.”
Debbie Tinsley, projects and outreach co-ordinator at #DMUlocal, added: “We didn’t want anyone to feel like they’re alone this Christmas.
“We did it last year and it went so well that people in the community were asking for us to do it again, so we did.
“We’re working closely with Age UK but the nice thing is we have several different groups who were not here last time.”
The Real Junk Food Project, run by Alison Preston and Bobby Hawkins, sources food from supermarkets and wholesalers which has been over-ordered or which has reached its ‘best before’ date but is still edible.
It runs twice-a-week cafe lunches at the community centre plus evening meals on Thursdays from 7pm to 8.30pm.
Posted on Monday 12th December 2016