Big news from The Big Lottery Fund!

We are excited to announce that we have secured funding from the Big Lottery Fund to extend and expand our successful Eating Positively service for another 3 years.

The Eating Positively classes have been designed to help people living with HIV to develop their understanding of nutrition and food skills, so that they can better manage their health, reduce their risk of developing further health complications and improve their overall quality of life.

In the past we have offered a suite of 3 different classes, covering basic nutrition, cookery demonstrations, food safety, food hygiene and practical cookery. Since funding for 2 of these classes ran out last year, we have only been able to offer one of these, the popular Introduction to Nutrition, which comprises a basic nutrition discussion and a live cookery demonstration. We will still be bringing this class to HIV support groups all over London, so that the service is accessible to the widest possible range of people.

However, there has been a clear message from our service users that they want more opportunities to learn to cook for themselves. We are therefore delighted that The Big Lottery Fund’s money will be used to offer a selection of different hands-on, kitchen-based classes. Each of these will include recipes and information on a specific issue relevant to our service users, such as eating well on a budget, reducing the risk of developing osteoporosis, or managing diabetes. Tips on food safety and hygiene will also be incorporated, encouraging service users to apply the rules to real life scenarios.

The opportunity to attend these classes will form part of the personalised nutrition care plan offered by The Food Chain; a package of services designed to enable each service user to achieve specific goals.

The timing of the new funding couldn’t be better. Our new purpose-designed kitchen at Acorn House, which will open in October, is currently being fitted with a chef’s demonstration area, brand new workstations, domestic appliances and utensils to make the classes engaging and accessible.

We look forward to welcoming people to the first of these new classes in the next few months.