Monday 27th February 2023
On Wednesday 22 February 2023, King Charles III visited The Felix Project, a charity which has partnered with the Caritas Food Collective, and which distributes food to food projects in London. Minet Masho, Caritas Westminster’s development worker for East London, attended the event.
His Majesty visited the facility in Poplar, to learn more about how The Felix Project fights food poverty and food waste. The Felix Project rescues surplus food and redistributes it to over 1,000 community groups and schools across London. However, as the King was told, need for their support is growing fast and hundreds of new organisations are currently on the waiting list to receive food.
His Majesty’s support has created new capacity for The Felix Project to rescue and distribute more food by providing freezers and fridges throughout their network. A £1 million fund – which included a donation from the King, The Prince of Wales Charitable Fund and others – is enabling The Felix Project to invest in its own large frozen storage facility and to provide freezers or fridges to 800 community organisations across the UK. The freezers and fridges will extend the life of more food and ensure the charities receiving the food have somewhere to store it.
One of the organisations to receive a fridge, was the Stokey Community Food Shop, in Stoke Newington. Minet has been instrumental in facilitating Caritas Westminster’s support of this project.
Minet spoke of her experience of meeting the King:
“A couple of weeks ago I received an invite to attend an event at The Felix Project’s depot in Poplar. King Charles III was going to meet organisations that have benefited from his generous donation I gladly accepted the invite, feeling proud to represent Caritas Westminster and Our Lady of Good Counsel parish where the Stokey Community Shop is open weekly.
On Wednesday 22nd February I made my way to Poplar depot, I was greeted and welcomed by security and Felix volunteers who directed me to the event space. There was enough time for networking and getting to know Felix staff/volunteers whilst enjoying the vast variety of biscuits and tea/coffee. I must admit, it was tiring hanging around, especially when we were asked to meet the King outside the building in between the entrance bay area and giant walk-in chillers – it was a cold and rainy day!
We were placed in three different groups, the first group met the King at the entrance, he shook hand with every person in line and spent time to speak with each and every one. Then he unveiled a new fridge-freezer in the middle of the bay area. Afterwards, he moved to the second group, shaking hands and speaking with them, and finally he came to the final group where I was second in line. For half a second I forgot the instruction we were given on how to address him as I was distracted by the press and photographers! I said who I was and the organisation I work for. Finally, he was escorted inside the building to meet dignitaries, donors and most importantly to unveil a plaque.
Overall, it was a pleasant day meeting representatives of other organisations and being acknowledged by royalty for the work we do to support vulnerable communities in these difficult times.”