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Big clear out for A.P.P.L.E as it gets ready for a new kitchen in Acton Park

An Acton Park-based charity that supports and helps children to develop their creativity is holding a Big Clear Out on Saturday (29 April 2023) as well as launching a crowd funding campaign to support its work.

Acton Play Projects and Leisure Events (A.P.P.L.E.) , which was founded by local parents in 1996, said the clear out is to facilitate a new kitchen that will help it grow and is inviting people to come down and take a look at what it has to give away as well as sell.

Vicki Barker, co-founder and project coordinator at A.P.P.L.E. said: “A.P.P.L.E have been at the ARTBLOCK in Acton Park for 20 years. We have cooked and eaten together from the very start. It has always been important- good home cooked food, fresh ingredients, hospitality and now ensuring everyone has enough to eat.

Ms Barker added: “Our tiny kitchen has served us well but we need more space and better equipment. A.P.P.L.E. are kicking off a big refurbishment project which will turn our storeroom into a beautiful new shiny kitchen.”

A.P..P.L.E clear out
A.P..P.L.E clear out

A.P.P.L.E has also launched a crowdfunding campaign to support and raise funds for the new kitchen. To support it, click here.

EALING.NEWS spoke to Vicki Barker to find out more about A.P.P.L.E

Tell us about the Big Clear Out, what are you aiming to do with it?
The Big Clear Out is the first stage in our Kitchen Hub project. This is to re-site our kitchen into what is now the storeroom. Our kitchen at the moment is tiny. The new kitchen will allow us to develop all our food projects.

How much is the new kitchen going to cost and how will it be different from your current one?
If we manage to raise all the money we hope to, and a grant from one of our funders, it will cost £40,000. This is to do everything!

What are you most proud of with A.P.P.L.E that it has achieved?
That we are still going after 27 years (20 in the ARTBLOCK) That the staff are wonderful. That we have taught hundreds of children and young people to cook. That were able to support our families all through lock down.  That our young people are active, engaged and positive member of the local community.

What challenges do you face?
Funding to keep going. It is always difficult and now more than ever.

What age range do you cater for?
We use to cater for 8-18’s but we now have all ages. Families with under 8’s as we offer free activities, food and a place to go that is welcoming to all.

Where do you see A.P.P.L.E in five years time?
More or less where we are now but with a bigger kitchen and welcoming everyone.

Apart from funding what else do you need, volunteers? And how can people help you?
For people to say positive things about A.P.P.L.E. help us be known.

Earlier this month, A.P.P.L.E received a £10,000 grant from HS2 which will allow it to continue to offer an after school art club for year 5 and year 6 pupils from John Perryn Primary School.

That funding will see it deliver 30 sessions of its after school club for 16 pupils. It will also be offering four drop-in sessions in June and July for children to help them prepare for the annual Acton Carnival taking place on 15 July 2023.

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