A visit to our Liverpool Rose Vouchers for Fruit & Veg Project

Photo: Matthew Ashton, (Liverpool’s Director of Public Health), Debi McAndrew, (Strategic Lead MVRP and Liverpool Children’s Centres at Children’s Services), Michael Crilly (Director of Social Health & Community Inclusion, Mersey Care), Martyn Jones (food Insecurity Officer, Torus Foundation), Naomi Maynard. (Good Food Programme Director, Feeding Liverpool), and Lucy Antal (Senior Project Manager and Lead for Food Justice, Alchemic Kitchen and Feedback Global), Jonathan Pauling (CEO Alexandra Rose Charity)

Last week, Matthew Ashton, Liverpool’s Director of Public Health and other key local stakeholders joined our CEO, Jonathan Pauling on a visit to the new Queen of the Green Bus and Dingle Children’s Centre, who we have been working with for many years.  The purpose of the visit was to show members of the group the impact of the Liverpool Rose Vouchers for Fruit & Veg Project and how important the Queen of Greens Fruit & Veg Van is to the success of the project in the city.

The Queen of Greens bus is a mobile greengrocer that delivers fresh fruit & veg to neighbourhoods classified as ‘food deserts’ and communities hit by food insecurity across Liverpool and Knowsley. It launched at the end of 2022. The bus aims to boost access to healthy food and tackle health inequalities. It visits 29 stops each week, including schools and health and community centres, providing people with better opportunities to shop for nutritious food closer to their homes or workplace. The bus accepts Rose Vouchers for Fruit & Veg and Healthy Start vouchers as payment, as well as cash or card.

After a visit to the bus, the group visited Dingle Children’s Centre, where the van stops weekly, to meet with children’s centre staff, parents, and children who benefit from the project. Parents explained what a crucial lifeline the Rose Vouchers for Fruit & Veg Project is to them, and how they would struggle to feed their families a healthy diet without it due to the significant increase in food costs over the last year.

“We’re immensely proud of our Liverpool Rose Vouchers for Fruit and Veg Project and the local partnerships that have made it such a success. This visit was a wonderful opportunity to be able to share our impact with key local supporters as well as getting to visit the brilliant new Queen of Greens Fruit & Veg Van, which makes fruit & veg accessible to local families using Rose Vouchers. We’re proud to partner with Feeding Liverpool and Alchemic Kitchen on this initiative.”

Jonathan Pauling, CEO at Alexandra Rose Charity

Hearing the impact our Rose Vouchers for Fruit & Veg Project is making locally was a heartwarming experience. It’s always inspiring to witness the tangible benefits of our efforts in the community and to hear first-hand how this project is making a real difference in the lives of families facing food insecurity.

We’re really grateful to everyone involved in the project and would like to extend our thanks to Lucy Antal, from Alchemic Kitchen, for her instrumental role in bringing the Rose Vouchers for Fruit & Veg Project to Liverpool. We remain committed to our mission of improving the health and wellbeing of families on low incomes by enabling them to access fresh fruit & veg.