With a new year’s resolution to continue to care for our site neighbours, a group of our South Rail Systems Alliance (SRSA) team collaborated with local charity, Cook for Good.

Blending teambuilding with good causes, volunteers from across the SRSA were welcomed to a local kitchen for batch cooking meals to be delivered to rough sleepers and low-income families.

Working to a bespoke three course menu, the team were divided into teams to take on each meal with support from Cook for Good’s professional chefs, the menu included:

  • Carrot and coriander soup
  • Chicken Shawarma and vegetarian equivalent
  • Herb & pomegranate couscous
  • Chopped salad with za’atar & sumac
  • Houmous
  • No-bake rose cheesecake with raspberry cardamom coulis

In total, the team cooked roughly 70 full menus, which were subsequently distributed to the local church.

Following the session, the volunteers also received a tour of Cook for Good’s pantry, a food bank set up containing food, toiletries and other everyday essentials.

Alicia McKenzie, Head of Marketing and Communications for Colas Rail UK said “It was upsetting to see that these services were needed on this scale in this day and age, but so encouraging that facilities like these exist and are making a real difference for those that need it.”

Bekah Hooper, Lead Infrastructure Logistics at Colas Rail UK said “All of the organisers, chefs & volunteers we met were so welcoming and inspiring.

“They truly give back to their community and I’ve not heard of a set up like theirs before with all they have to offer. I had fun helping to cook as a team and learned essential cooking skills along the way!”

Robinne Collie, Co-Founder of Cook for Good said “It was fantastic to have the Colas Rail team come in and cook for our community. There was an excellent team energy in the kitchen which translated to delicious food being cooked, packaged up and labelled for our community.

“The food produced went to a local church, who serve up dinner for the homeless, and also to our community Pantry for our members to take as part of their shop. The meals were so appreciated by all who received them.

“And all the profits from the event have gone toward supporting our community cookery classes, meals, training programmes and more – Thank you Colas Rail UK, you were all amazing!”

First Published: 19th February 2024