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Community / Opening event held for NHS and Food for the Way Polycrubs

NHS Shetland staff, guests and members from Food for the Way celebrated the opening of the Montfield Polycrubs on Monday. Photo: NHS Shetland

TWO new Polycrubs in Lerwick which will be used by NHS Shetland staff and the Food for the Way project were officially opened on Monday.

The Polycrubs are located near to the NHS accommodation block at Montfield.

The smaller 8m by 4m one will be used by NHS Shetland staff during breaks and after hours.

The larger one, which is sized at 12m x 4m, will be used by Food for the Way, which is a local mission outreach by the Methodist Church.

The project hopes to provide social contact and therapeutic activities for individuals and their families affected by alcohol and drug use.

Monday’s launch came as part of Alcohol Awareness Week (1 – 7 July).

Funding for the NHS Polycrub came through the organisations endowment fund, while the larger one has been funded by the Corra Foundation.

NHS Shetland already has a Polycrub at the Walls Health Centre.

As part of the Montfield project, two extra parking spaces have also been created – one of which will be accessible.

The area surrounding the Polycrubs will be further developed to encourage biodiversity with a range of trees, shrubs and wildflowers.

Chair of the Shetland health board endowment fund committee Lincoln Carroll said: “It’s exciting to see this project completed and the Polycrubs ready to be used.

“The various health benefits of growing your own and gardening are well known, including boosting physical and mental wellbeing. I’m sure staff using the Polycrubs will soon gain a great deal of satisfaction when they’re eating the salad that they’ve grown for lunch.

“Many thanks to our generous donors; through their support, we can continue to sponsor remarkable projects. It is rewarding to see money from the Endowment Fund being used in such a positive and sustainable way. I can’t wait to see what is grown.”

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Rev Michelle McAdoo, pioneer for Food the Way, said: “Food for the Way is not just about providing food, but about growing a community based on ‘The Way’ of the life of Jesus who showed hospitality and healing to all who needed it.

“We are very grateful for all of the support from the NHS, local businesses, local churches and individuals who have generously provided their time, talents and resources to get this project started.

“Transition Turriefield has helped us to develop a plan for accessible raised beds and a planting plan to get us started for the autumn.

“We hope to be able to grow food that volunteers can take home and enjoy with any surplus being cooked for the Food for the Way weekly community lunch.

“We look forward to working with new volunteers from Food for the Way, Shetland Recovery Hub and the Living and the Lived Experience Recovery Network group to support the growing recovery community here in Shetland and are delighted to be opening today as part of our joint activities during Alcohol Awareness Week.”

There are a range of activities planned for alcohol awareness week.

These include a Food for the Way drop-in event on Wednesday, Shetland’s first ‘recovery cafe’ on Thursday and a sober DH night at the Staney Hill Hall on Saturday night.

More information on the range of activities can be found in the image below.

Meanwhile anyone interested in volunteering for Food for the Way can contact Rev McAdoo by mobile on 07522 539696 or email via foodfortheway@gmail.com.

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