The Saltash Community have been making the most of the hot weather with trips to the park,
beach and the Waterside, it’s been great to see families spending time together and making the
most of the sunshine. Unfortunately this also means that the number of customers visiting our
Community Shop and Kitchen have been reduced – despite that, we continue to be there as usual
for everyone that needs us.
Due to changes in our Board, Lisa Hamley, a Lead Volunteer, together with the support of other
volunteers, has taken over managing No 4, she is doing a great job! Thanks to a successful
marketing campaign by our Marketing Director, Melanie Cowie, we have made contact with a
number of local craftspeople who are keen to use our facility to promote their goods, please pop in
to have a look at the new selection we have on offer.
Our position at the bottom of Fore Street means that, despite every best effort, many people in
Saltash are still unaware of our existence. We recently conducted a short survey with visitors to No
4 to try to gain some understanding as to how we are perceived and how we can attract more
people into our shop. Many customers thought we were a charity shop, but the majority were
unaware of our purpose and ethos. As a result we are making some simple changes to No 4 with
the aim of making it more user friendly, this includes rearranging the shelves and making more
space for people to browse. We are also using No 8 to show off our produce and using social
media to increase awareness of everything we have to offer.
No 4 is also our ‘hub’ that provides help and information about the local community, we’re an
unofficial tourist information centre for Saltash and promote other activities in the town alongside
our own trips and activities. We have a number of regular customers who pop in for a chat and to
find out what’s going on. If you want to know more about Saltash life - please pop in too (we might
not have all the answers but can point you in the right direction.)
Please spread the word about our lovely shop which is packed full of gorgeous gifts, many with a
Cornish or Saltash theme, they are great as keepsakes for people visiting our town and well as
We are delighted that the amount of food we receive from local shops has seen an increase over
the last few weeks, our mission is to only use food destined for landfill and so our offerings can
only reflect what we receive. With the increased variety, customers to our fridge and larder are
able to have a wider choice. We regularly have 600 to 700 visitors a month, including many
families who rely on this facility to supplement their food shopping. With the continued increase of
people living in food poverty, this is a resource much needed in Saltash.
Over time we have developed strong links with the ‘Gleaning Cornwall Network,’ this is a network
of volunteer gleaners ( harvesters) and drivers who salvage produce that would otherwise be left
to rot in fields for a number of reasons; sometimes it is uneconomic to harvest all the fruit and
vegetables, there may be a glut, the market might change and some are just not up to
supermarket standards being wonky, too big or too small. The team of volunteers harvest this
produce and distribute it to local community groups, including our own Community Kitchen and
Fridge. We have benefitted from tiny cauliflowers, wonky carrots and much, much more. All this
produce is perfectly edible and so we use a proportion to cook hearty meals in No 8 and to distribute via the fridge.
Whilst we are here to support the PL12 community, we also appreciate how much support we receive in return. This year we are thrilled to be the recipient of the Mayor’s Charity and the Co-op membership scheme. We are also supported in other ways, one of our valued DV members recently passed away, his widow donated the proceeds from his funeral collection to our Veterans group in his memory, Ashetorre has a collection tin for our DV group and one regular to the kitchen often gives us vouchers to spend at Martin Dean Butchers. Our ovens, donated when No 8 opened, have long been inefficient and costly to run so we were delighted when HBH Woolacott gave us a generous reduction in cost which enabled us to purchase new ovens that are now working well.
All these tokens of thanks mean a lot to us and motivate us to continue with our work. Carol Emmets, our amazing DV Lead Volunteer, has been out of action for some weeks with a knee injury, she has just returned home after having had a knee operation so we hope she will be back to her boisterous self before too much longer. As usual our team of volunteers stepped up to make sure that all our groups could continue to run as usual.
Earlier this month our Singing Group was visited by a representative from the Alzheimer's Society. She is helping to run a programme called Time for Dementia which is designed to educate undergraduate healthcare professionals to improve their knowledge, attitude and empathy towards people with dementia and their carers. Plymouth University has joined the programme and are looking for families to work with them to give students first-hand experience of dementia. As always, we are happy to support and promote such initiatives as they can only help to increase awareness of the impact of living with dementia.
Behind the scenes we are putting in a lot of time and energy to considering the way we communicate with each other, both formally and informally. Our volunteer base continues to grow and we need to make sure that we keep everyone ‘in the loop!’ (A tricky task!) We are planning a number of social events where volunteers from different enterprises can meet up, get to know each other and share ideas.
As we approach the summer holidays all our enterprises will continue to provide the service that everyone has come to expect, come rain, shine or even extreme heat, our volunteers continue to turn up with a cheery smile and a determination to do a good job. Sunday 2nd July is the third National Thank You Day, a chance to say thank you for everyone and everything that makes our communities great places to live in and get connected with the people they live alongside all year round.
Saltash is a wonderful town, we benefit from a wide variety of groups and organisations that all help to enhance the lives of our community. We are so lucky to live in this amazing town and want to take this special ‘Thank you Day’ to say a HUGE thank you to all the volunteers across the town who make such a difference to our lives.
For more information about any of our activities please check out our Facebook and Instagram pages, our website or pop into No 4 or 8 to find out more.
'Together we can, together we do'
War-barth ‘gan gallos War-barth ‘gan gwul