It was all smiles as MacIntyre celebrated its first Community Roast dinner. Swanwick Memorial Hall hosted the inaugural event with the purpose of inviting people locally who are feeling isolated or may be struggling financially, to come together, socialise and enjoy a Sunday roast.
Speaking after the event, Kathryn Yates (Great Communities Manager) said:
“We wanted to create a human, fun and relaxing space for people to come and spend time together. Michelle and the whole MacIntyre team had thought about the atmosphere, entertainment and - of course – a cracking roast dinner. People found out about it in different ways and we had real mix of people getting to know each other.”
Mr Green said:
“I live on my own and I don’t see many people and I have loved every minute”.
Another couple were celebrating 60 years of marriage. Two couples shared their experience of one partner living with dementia.
But it wasn’t just about the community coming and eating together. People wanted to join in and help from making teas and coffees, setting and clearing and judging the Easter bonnet competition. From start to finish it was a team effort.
MacIntyre’s Head of Best Practice, Merle Davis added:
“I’ve been blown away by an extraordinary group of people today. The impact of great leadership, team work, kindness and forging local connections, led to MacIntyre first ‘Community Roast’ at Swanwick Lifelong Learning Hub in Chesterfield. Special thanks to Michelle, Kathryn, the Swanwick staff team and the amazing volunteers for all the planning and preparation which resulted in a fabulously spirited Sunday enjoyed by many. Excited to see what comes next!”
The success of the first event has resulted in future Community Roasts being scheduled for the second Sunday of each month, the next one will be Sunday 8 May 2022.
Reflecting on the achievements, Michelle Wilkinson, Manager of the Swanwick Lifelong Learning Hub, added:
“It was such a brilliant day! I have received some lovely messages from residents in the local area saying how much they enjoyed it. Huge thanks to Kathryn and everyone involved for their hard work. Buzzing for the next one.”
The generosity of the day also extended outside of the hub, as once people left and the hall tidied, dinners were taken out to the homeless in and around the town centre.
MacIntyre’s principles are around inclusion and bringing people together to make a difference in their community. We want the people we support to be seen as leaders in our community with talents and resource not just recipients of support. We want to help people to feel part of something.