Over the last 18 months a small group of members at People Matters have worked together to develop and pilot a new community business making and selling wholesome snacks from mixtures of dried fruit, nuts and seeds etc. Now they have just successfully gained a new grant to move forward from the pilot stage to roll out the new venture.
Called Nourishing People the group have had really good feedback about the quality of their products and are hoping to continue to sell in workplaces with an honesty box system and next want to expand into local cafes, pubs and clubs across Leeds.
The people already involved have been learning about food hygiene, customer service, production and stock control plus much more whilst getting ready to move beyond the pilot. Those contributing want to have the chance to be entrepreneurs, get a new business going and are looking for more local people to get involved.
They now have someone to support them and lead the business as well as premises organised in Holbeck. David Green the Enterprise Lead at People Matters said that “we want to build a social business that offers local people a pathway into employment.”
Nourishing People will be a Community Interest Company specifically for those who have experienced particular difficulty in finding work such as because they have a disability or health condition. We don’t expect people to offer more time than they are able but by getting involved you could help the initiative to grow and offer South Leeds people a different way forward instead of CV and job search sessions.
Learning together makes it more enjoyable and a community business is more practical than going on a course. People Matters are hosting the new enterprise to make sure that it meets its financial and legal obligations as well as discussing what is happening with DWP.
They have said that if the venture gets to the point of trading profitably they will seek to offer short employment contracts, then support for moving into more permanent work elsewhere and/or for other activities for the community.
Have you never worked or been out of a job for a good while and want to get involved in learning new skills as well as building your work experience to put on your CV? There is lots to do and the chance to get involved at the start means this could be a real opportunity to build something great locally in South Leeds.
More information is available on the Nourishing People Facebook page or via Twitter. Alternatively find out more through the People Matters office on 0113 234 6896.
People Matters is based at Barkston House, Domestic Street, Holbeck, LS11 9RT.
This post was written by Tina Turnbull using our Create an article for South Leeds Life page.