Middle of the Hill Community Group
About Middle of the Hill Community GroupThe Middle of the Hill Community Group, in Bisley Old Road, Stroud, has seen neighbours supporting each other for over 20 years. Always grass-roots led & volunteer-run, now more than ever we flex and change to best offer a helping hand to those in need, whilst continuing to work to our simple core mission of "Making our Neighbourhood a Community".
MHCG has run a busy Foodhub from its Community Room in Nouncells Cross since January 2021, when as a response to Covid19 we looked at how we could directly support those among us living in challenging circumstances, with financial hardship and food insecurity starting to become so much more commonplace.
The last three years have seen our FoodHub grow & change, from National Lottery funds for new flooring & external decking to internal shelving & decor, from a few Tesco items a week to links built with NoSH, FareShare, Stroud Farmers Market, Waitrose, The Hygiene Bank, InKind & many more to ensure we reduce food waste by bringing good quality surplus stock to our shelves & fridges or freezers. This has enabled us to step up to meet the joint challenges of Cost of Living and Fuel Crises, with some welcome support from our fantastic funders.
As well as providing a range Food & Hygiene products our FoodHub has become an important social hub for our Community, helping to reduce isolation, enabling neighbours to meet & enjoy a cuppa & a chat three days a week.
Whether it's food or tea & biscuits we don't charge set prices or a fee, we operate on a pay-as-you-can basis, we've found this enables those who use us to help reduce food waste, for example, to support those who may be experiencing food insecurity. There is the understanding that there is no eligibility criteria and that we are open to all. All customers are aware donations are gratefully received to assist with our running costs.
We also run an active community gardening project and have transformed an underused part of the estate into a lovely Community Garden where we have raised beds to grow scented herbs, flowers, fruit and vegetables. This brings our neighbours together, helps us feel closer to nature, and to take pride in the spaces we share together.
Our monthly grounds action days (which end in a shared community lunch) tackle bigger projects and have achieved much, including painting areas of the estate, planting a new 150m long Native Hedgerow to support wildlife habitat & decrease pollution, creating a wildflower meadow, building raised beds, and we're very proud of our own compost!
We offer fun and rewarding volunteer opportunities as part of a great team of volunteers. We love those we have, but we do need new volunteers to join us in this exciting, busy & rewarding venture!