Families helped by local ‘social supermarket’

A ‘social supermrket’ run by Vineyard Compassion in Coleraine has helped more than 300 local families since it began.

Since January 2018, the RESET programme has served 325 families (801 people), providing savings of £137,000 on food and household essentials costs for families in the Causeway Coast & Glens area.

RESET Social Supermarket is a Vineyard Compassion programme based at the Hope Centre at the Hillman’s Way site in Coleraine.

Reset is designed to help people who are struggling to put food on the table by offering access to food and household items at a reduced cost.

One member told of the difference the programme made to their circumstances: “RESET was really good value for money with the amount of produce you receive; this was of great benefit to me during tough times,”

The programme was initially funded by the Department for Communities as one of five Social Supermarket projects piloted in Northern Ireland back in January 2018 as part of the NI Welfare Reform Mitigations and due to the success of the scheme, continues to receive government funding from the Department of Communities.

Ricky Wright, Director of Vineyard Compassion, said: “RESET Social Supermarket aims to support people to reset the priorities of food, finance and future stability for themselves and their families.”

RESET is designed to give people access to reduced cost food items and household essentials for a period of six months whilst engaging with a tailored one-to-one support plan and access to a range of “wraparound” services. These services are aimed at equipping and empowering people with the skills and resources they need to get back on their feet after a crisis or to help prevent them getting to the place of crisis.

The various wraparound services can include benefits and budgeting advice, short courses in resilience and cooking and more.

Anyone wishing to apply for membership of the RESET project will need to meet certain criteria including experience of food insecurity, a low disposable income and a willingness to make positive changes. The friendly staff at Vineyard Compassion will talk you through the submission and assessment and if the submission is successful, you will be assigned a dedicated support worker who will help to identify what wraparound services are applicable for your circumstances.

Membership will give you access to the online shopping system where you can purchase food items at a reduced cost (around 30% RRP). You can choose from a variety of fresh, frozen and ambient foods, toiletries and household cleaning

products. You will be able to access enough food that will provide your household with a balanced diet (depending on your choices) for breakfast, lunch and dinner for around five days as well as snacks and treats.

As a member of RESET you will be committing to a financial contribution towards your food. The subscription will be determined by the number of people in your household. For example, a household of two adults and two children would have a subscription of £10 per week.

For more information and to apply to be a part of the RESET programme, contact W: vineyardcompassion.co.uk/reset; E: [email protected]; T: 028 7022 0005