Cooking up a storm for community housing company
Aspiring student cooks from Leeds City College are producing 100 meals a day for the United Living workforce at the Points Cross building site, opposite Printworks Campus.
The School of Travel, Food and Drink has joined forces with the infrastructure firm to help students gain experience and develop knowledge in a working kitchen.
The Food Station
As part of the project, an on-site portacabin was transformed into a fit-for-purpose commercial kitchen named ‘The Food Station’, which involved extensive planning and negotiation with local suppliers to ensure the unit was cost effective.
The school’s trainee bakers, butchers and chefs prepare and serve daily meals to the site operatives, which includes a full English breakfast, hot dish of the day, sandwiches and cakes. Students use their creative cooking flair to develop daily dishes with a focus on fresh local ingredients, healthy eating and value for money.
David Ford, Catering Manager for the United Living Project at Leeds City College, said: “The service we provide has exceeded customer expectations, with positive feedback being received from the builders and the management team at United Living. The site workers use our service daily and engage with our staff, students and apprentices.
“This is a four-year building project, where students can gain invaluable experience of working within a commercial environment, where they can refine skills and enhance confidence. We even had a visit from the Mayor of West Yorkshire, Tracy Brabin, who was impressed with the commitment of the programme.”
The project also encourages the site operatives to consider health and wellbeing through eating well, by providing a range of healthy snacks at the ‘grab and go’ counter and educational notice boards on topics such as mental health, stress and allergens.
Supporting local charities
The School of Travel, Food and Drink has recently supported Leeds homeless charity, St George’s Crypt.
Learners hosted a buffet for the charity’s 90th birthday, whereby they prepared and served canapes and drinks at its photography exhibition.
Helen Lunt, Deputy Head of Apprenticeships and Commercial at Leeds City College, added: “We are committed to providing 50 meals each month to the charity, and hope to take this a step further by offering support to service users with free haircuts, beard trims, work experience and careers advice.”
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