- Sophie Mears, 33, started by joining a Facebook community group and helped a family who needed meals.
- She had to pass a “virtual inspection” from the council to continue operations.
- Donations from locals help fund her meals, which go from 60 to 80 a day.
Just like any other sensible person during this time, Sophie Mears decided to stay at home to protect herself and her loved ones from getting the coronavirus. But instead of just counting the days until it’s safe to go back outside, she is spending her isolation cooking food for the vulnerable ones.
The 33-year-old mom from Dorset in the UK spends around 10 hours a day making meals for people who cannot leave their homes during the pandemic. Sophie, who works in admin at a local school, chose to work from home for safety.
Sophie Mears helps feed the elderly and vulnerable in her community.
Through a Facebook community group, she learned about a family who was in need of a meal. Sophie volunteered to help. This started her “soup kitchen.”
Her venture hit a little snag when council officials required her to have a food hygiene certificate. The problem was, the council could not visit for inspection due to the crisis situation.
Sophie pleaded with the authorities and was able to make them agree to a virtual inspection instead.
She passed the certification and was also given a five-star rating.
Now the busy mom is operating more smoothly with the help of her support team. She has someone in charge of monitoring social media messages to keep track of those who need meals.
Meanwhile, her partner Gary is the one in charge of organizing and packing the meals for delivery, which is carried out by eight other volunteers.
Hearty meals packed and ready to be delivered!
“My kitchen is not massive, it’s just a normal family kitchen. I’ve got several slow cookers so I have those going through the night and then in the mornings I do the bits I can’t do in the slow cookers,” shared Sophie.
She added that her garage has since been turned into storage, equipped with fridges and chest freezer. Financing comes courtesy of donations from locals, which cover the costs of Sophie’s meals such as stews, soups, cottage pies, and chilli.
Sophie with her kids and her partner Gary, who helps organize and pack the meals.
“The support has just been unbelievable and it just fills my heart with joy to know when I sit down at night for a meal with my family, I’ve been able to help somebody else have that, too,” she said.
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