LINKS Eyemouth is a project for families in the Eyemouth area in the Borders. The focus is round healthy, lower budget eating and wider wellbeing as a means of promoting social connections. The project has helped strengthen community partnerships between different organisations, groups and small businesses, while sometimes making use of surplus food which would otherwise be wasted.
What we're doing
This project began as an offshoot of Eyemouth Healthy Living Network but has become an entity in its own right, supported by OTB and other partners. Originally there were regular meetups, with social events centred around healthy eating. These involved families with young children, as well as older volunteers and grandparents, in various community settings.
LINKS has also been running fortnightly family cooking sessions for adults with preschool children, in partnership with Joint Health Improvement Team and Eyemouth Early Years. It takes place at the Community Centre in Eyemouth. Each session families come together and take part to make a delicious, healthy recipe.
Over the summer LINKS will be providing 54 families in the Eyemouth area with tickets to East Links Farm Park thanks to funding from the Children and Young People Planning Partnership.
LINKS has also been successful in receiving a grant from the Drone Hill Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund, administered by Foundation Scotland. This grant is to support the delivery of a community health and well-being programme for the next 12 months, ensuring we reach people living in outlying areas too.
The impact it's having so far
From delivering to a dozen families in the first weeks of Lockdown, LINKS now reaches around 50-60 families per week. Some families have stopped using the food bank as they prefer the positive (virtual) social element of the LINKS model.
The project has recently produced a recipe booklet and had its very own reusable bags printed. In the last year the project has managed to obtain further funding of over £10k, and is one of the chosen projects of the local Co-op Community Fund.
‘I feel much more connected thanks to LINKS. When I came here I didn’t know anyone.’
‘Joe would never have tried cauliflower before now. They all wolfed it when we made this recipe.’
‘There’s such excitement in our house when the LINKS bag arrives! The kids can’t wait to get started on the recipe each week!’