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Vital Meals - the cookery school

Impact data and claims within this report are provided by the project creator and have not been independently verified by Spacehive.

Vital Meals - the cookery school

Vital Meals By Vital Meals

Vital Meals provides free cooking classes to children and adults across London, unable to provide for themselves.

Clapham Idea stage

This project is preparing for fundraising. Click Like to show your support, or Follow for updates on this project's journey.

Vital Meals was set up by Ayesha Pakravan-Ovey BEM on the 18th of March 2020 in an emergency response to the pandemic. Initially a small operation providing just 10 meals a week, the initiative grew to delivering over 1,000 meals a week with a final total of over 26,000 meals. Now, as we draw our free meal delivery service to a close, we are seeking funding on Spacehive to launch our cookery school. Our school will provide the education so crucially needed for our recipients (young and old) to nourish themselves when our free Vital Meals are no longer here. This is the lasting legacy we hope Vital Meals will leave behind. Our overall mission for the school is simple: We run cookery classes for children and young adults to arm them with confidence in a kitchen & the knowledge to cook healthy, nutritional meals for themselves & their families.

What we'll deliver:

  • Install ovens, hob & additional equipment needed
  • Expand our cookery classes to other communities across London
  • Run a minimum of 3 cooking classes per week (10 attendees per session)
  • Offer paid work experience in our team, for young adults interested in a career within food
  • Provide a space, within our kitchen in Brixton, for families to eat around our collective table

Why it's a great idea:

Having provided over 26,000 free meals in the past year, we have reached a point where we are now looking at the legacy Vital Meals will leave behind. The saying "give a man a fish, he will eat for a day. Teach a man to fish, he will eat for a lifetime" could not be more relevant at this moment. Through our cooking school, we want to be able to change the mindsets and attitudes that many people in our communities have around food and show them that they can live a healthy and affordable life, with a small amount of fundamental education. We want to help those that rely on our free meals to learn how to cater for themselves and how to nourish themselves for the rest of their lives, should Vital Meals no longer be here to do so and to show people the benefits (and enjoyment) that come from a healthy lifestyle.

Steps to get it done:

  • 400 cooking classes provided
  • 2,000 free meals provided
  • 4 apprenticeships (1 per month)
  • 8 Sunday Lunch clubs successfully delivered (2 per month)

The classes will be broken down in to three key areas: Activities Club: Our informal drop in, drop out sessions for children and adults to get a flavour of cooking without any ongoing commitment. These sessions will be broken down in to age groups and will offer a fun, informal introduction to cooking. Skills Development: A 6 week programme offering both children and adults the chance the learn deeper kitchen based skills with the potential of utilising these in the workplace in the future. Graduates of this programme will receive a certificate and a written reference from us Sunday lunch club: An open session for all families within our locality to come and learn how to cook one specific recipe that we then eat all together around our collective table. Our project is based in Lambeth, available to all within this locality. Lambeth has the highest rate of child obesity in the country (according to figures released in 2019) which highlights just has essential work like this is.

Location Clapham

About the space

Custom Location


London Borough of Lambeth

How will the money be spent?Total £11,473

Staff costs - £2,880 (25%)
Ingredients for cooking classes - £2,600 (23%)
Paid Apprenticeships - £2,000 (17%)
Kitchen rent - £2,000 (17%)
Equipment for classes - £1,000 (9%)
Other - £993 (9%)

Costs Breakdown

This shows how money raised for the project will be spent. Before entering fundraising these costs will be confirmed by the project's Delivery Manager and verified by the verifier.

Staff costs
Ingredients for cooking classes
Paid Apprenticeships
Kitchen rent
Equipment for classes
Other Read More
  • Spacehive fees
  • Transaction Fees
  • VAT


This project is enabled for overfunding. If the project hits its funding goal before the end of the campaign period, any extra funds raised will be spent (in order of priority) on:

  • Every £5 over funding we will match with a free cooking class for someone in our community
  • Kitchen improvements, new equipment
  • Provide kitchen equipment (ovens, fridges, microwaves) to the many families without

Total £11,473

Our Volunteer List

We're currently looking for people to offer skills and time to develop our project! Check out the list of what we need below and then use the 'Volunteer' button to the right to get involved.

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