An environmental not for profit, working on food sustainability, has received over £400,000 in funding to ensure they can continue their work after putting out an emergency appeal last month.

In July, not for profit social enterprise Aber Food Surplus, based in Aberystwyth, turned to the town council in hope of securing vital funding to keep operations running after facing an uncertain future.

After explaining they would need £4,000 to continue their operations until September, the town council concluded they would support the organisation.

But now, they have announced they have been awarded £439,125 in funding from The National Lottery Community Fund, securing their future for the next three years.

At the town council meeting, Chris Woodfield and Heather McClure, from the organisation, said they are “almost 100 per cent crowd funded” and that they are “currently experiencing a funding short fall”. They risked losing team members and their base on Chalybeate Street.

Aber Food Surplus said the National Lottery funding will allow them to build on existing work; expanding their Food Sharing Hub, retaining three full time members of staff, and offering “a wide range of meaningful opportunities to participate in our food system”.

They said the community benefits will focus on human and planetary health and wellbeing, and include volunteering opportunities, the development of a range of income generating activities around value added products, social prescribing and skill-sharing.

They added: “A culture of collaborative solutions-focused community action on the climate action on the climate crisis will be co-designed and championed.”

Director Heather said: “After a few tough months of funding uncertainty for Aber Food Surplus, the team are delighted to announce that the project has now secured funding from the National Lottery Community Fund to build on the organisations’ track record of bringing the community together over food and environment action.

“We would like to take this opportunity to thank all friends of the project for their ongoing support, and for working with us to build a brighter future and more resilient community.

“We are now actively looking for a new space with even bigger potential; keep up to date with our progress by following @aberfoodsurplus or signing up to our newsletter mailing list via our website.”

During the July town council meeting, which was attended by Chris and Heather, councillors questioned how it was that the organisation found themselves in the situation in the first place, enquiring about prior funding and approaches to local businesses for support.

Cllr Alun Williams said: “I want to support them; they’re doing a social service but I worry if they have the financial know how but they’re certainly a worthwhile organisation.”

Cllr Dylan Wilson-Lewis added: “What they’re doing is really good work but there is a lack of planning and accountability.”