The GFO team is growing: Nina is leaving her role as GFO Coordinator in May, so we have some exciting opportunities coming up to join our team. Read on to find out more about the three roles we are recruiting for, plus a new survey on school food as well as exciting network events coming up, including a free online food growing workshop this week and cost of living in Oxfordshire webinar next week.
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Are you committed to healthier, fairer and more sustainable food for Oxfordshire?
As part of the Good To Grow Weekend, Good Food Oxfordshire, Replenish Oxfordshire and The Oxford Garden Project are hosting a free online workshop on growing your own vegetables on Wednesday 27th April.
The workshop concludes this year's Good To Grow Weekend – formerly known as the Big Dig – a wonderful opportunity to launch your activities for the coming growing season, invite your neighbourhood and gain new volunteers. If your community or school garden is not already listed on the Good To Grow map, you can sign up for free here. Participating gardens get support with insurance through Social Farms and Gardens and have access to useful resources to help organise events and volunteering sessions.
In January 2022 Good Food Oxfordshire and Oxfordshire County-Council co-hosted a workshop on school food in the county. Learnings from the workshop have informed the development of the Oxfordshire Food Strategy – a multi-stakeholder strategy presenting a vision for a better food system for Oxfordshire. The strategy will be published in June 2022.
If you are a school, school food caterer or other kind of organisation for instance a local authority or third sector organisation, we invite you to contribute your views and complete a short survey by Friday 29 April to indicate your areas of interest, the work that you are already doing, what support you need and what support you can offer others to improve school food provision.
Here are some of the highlights from the network this month! Remember to get in touch with your own grapevine news, and make use of the option of listing your events on our website's calendar at goodfoodoxford.org/events. And if we have helped you, please consider making a regular or occasional donation to contribute to the running of your network – within the range of your organisation’s ability of course.
The Iraqi Women Art and War group www.iwaw19.com, do art and Iraqi food catering, currently for events and they would love to open a café or popup café. They are open for catering bookings and would love to hear from you if you can offer support with funding, enterprise development or finding a venue.
The new Velocity cycle couriers are focussed on working with local food producers to help them move in to and increase home delivery and already deliver for several local coffee roasters, bakers & caterers supplying lunches. Get in touch if you're interested in their services: velocitycc.co.uk
The Meat The Future exhibition and Eat The Future Cafe at the Natural History Museum are open until May. They are well worth a visit and entry is free.
OX4 Food Crew now offer a "Pay as you feel" lunch every Monday, at Waste2Taste on the first Monday of the month and all other Mondays at Flo's The Place in the Park.
There's new foodie book coming out for Oxfordshire baking fans on 28th April: Breadsong: How Baking Changed Our Lives tells the story of the Orange Bakery run by Kitty and Al Tait. It also features more than 80 recipes.
The Switch Up Your Lunch veg pledge is inviting organisations and businesses across Oxfordshire to serve a vegetarian or vegan lunch on June 13th. Take the pledge now
Welcome to the most recent new GFO network members, Velocity Cycle Couriers, Food for the Brain, Kathy Slack, Oxford Mutual Aid and The Local Trove. It's free to join the GFO network – sign up now with your business, organisation or group at goodfoodoxford.org/network.
Organise your own Little or Big Lunch in June
Cherwell District Council have pulled together a guide to bringing your community together to organise a Little Lunch. Working in partnership with The One Bicester team, behind Bicester’s Big Lunch and The Big Lunch Eden Project, they want to support residents, community groups, charities and schools to organise their own Little Lunch event in their street or local neighbourhood. Download the guide or visit the Eden Project website to find out more about The Big Lunch.
Startup Business Bootcamp
OxLEP Business is running fully funded 2-day business bootcamp designed to give a solid foundation to developing a successful business that focuses on helping the local community, or creating a positive social or environmental impact. The sessions, tailored for early stage and start up businesses, will also help you to identify your business mission and increase the positive impact you have through your work. Find out more and sign up on Eventbrite
Makespace Oxford is recruiting a Community Development Coordinator and a Facilities Coordinator
We're Just One Slice of the Pie: Global and National Food News
National Living Wage has risen, but is it enough?
The national living wage has been raised to £9.50 per hour, but the Living Wage Foundation argues that this still leaves the UK’s lowest paid workers hundreds of pounds away from a wage that would meet the real cost of living. The Oxfordshire Community Foundation is hosting a webinar on the cost of living crisis in Oxfordshire on 4th May, and one of the speakers will be Fiona Steel (Good Food Oxfordshire), who will talk about food poverty and how communities in Oxfordshire are affected.
DEFRA Public Sector Food and Catering How-To Guide for SMEs
DEFRA's has published a How-To Guide for SMEs on Public Sector Food and Catering. The new guide aims to make it easier for food and drink businesses to benefit from the growing demand for local produce and to help them access support, training and information to run and grow their businesses. Find out more and download the guide
In the news:
Families lost out on almost £70 million of free food under the Healthy Start Vouchers scheme in 2021, and the digitisation of the scheme has been plagued with issues. Read more on the Sustain blog
The selection below is taken from our list of upcoming food-related events around Oxfordshire. See them all and submit your own events here.
22-25th April Good To Grow Day for all community gardens, allotments and school gardens. If your community or school garden is not already listed on the map, you can sign up for free and download useful resources to help you with your events. Oxfordshire events include: