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December 2013: One Year On!

The first thing I did as CEO of The Food Chain was to visit the kitchens on Christmas Day in 2012 and it was a great pleasure to do so again this December. It felt very fitting to open and close the 25th anniversary year in the same way it all began and to place my own footsteps alongside those that went before me.

I have learnt many things in the past twelve months about what we do at The Food Chain and how we do it. I have met lovely and interesting people and have seen our services change and develop as we respond to the current needs of our service users. I have seen Acorn House kitchen come to life and start to develop its potential as a source of income for the charity.

Above all else, I have learnt about the fantastic energy and commitment of everyone involved with The Food Chain whether as a volunteer, a trustee, a staff member or supporter. Together, we are there throughout the days and weeks that people are on service with us to offer not just delicious, nutritious meals but to also share our skills, expertise, warm welcome and practical community support at the times when people need it most.

The Food Chain has a strong heart that goes on beating even as times change and individuals come and go. The new year will bring all kinds of challenges as we make choices about our future direction and grapple with reduced income in the next financial year. But however complex the strategic decisions to come may be I have been here long enough to know that we have a constancy of purpose that has been part of The Food Chain from day one. We all care about people living with HIV in our community and that’s a pretty good compass to steer us on our way.

My Christmas time this year has included relaxing times with friends and much feasting. This is a dish for which I’m pleased to say I can take no credit whatsoever. A very rich and festive bread and butter pudding made from panettone. How very nice it is to be cooked for. Delicious and distinctly unhealthy .

Wishing everyone a peaceful and happy 2014