AN Aberystwyth food charity is in desperate need of funds to keep its operations running.

Not for profit social enterprise, Aber Food Surplus, based on Chalybeate Street, recently turned to Aberystwyth Town Council in the hope of securing vital funding needed to keep operations running. Aber Food Surplus is an organisation that aims to tackle food waste whilst also providing “Pay as you feel meals,” making sustainable food accessible to all.

However, Chris Woodfield and Heather McClure from the organisation turned to Aberystwyth Town Council for emergency funding necessary to keep the organisation running.

At the meeting, Chris explained that the organisation is “almost 100 per cent crowd funded” and that they are “currently experiencing a funding short fall”.

Due to these difficulties, the group is at risk of losing team members.

Heather said: “We are at risk of losing some of our core staff and losing our base.

“We won’t be able to help our volunteers and that includes the very vulnerable.”

Speaking to the Cambrian News, Heather added: “325 people received our surplus food boxes in June. Community fridge foot traffic appears to be increasing.”

Aber Food Surplus needs a sum of over £4,000 from the council to continue operations until September. During the meeting, councillors questioned how it was that the organisation found themselves in this situation, 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.”

However, despite these questions, councillors concluded that they would support the organisation.

Heather told the Cambrian News: “The town council has supported the project with emergency funding while the project waits to hear back from other funders. The team have been working on a National Lottery Community Fund application for over a year, this is a competitive fund that we are awaiting the outcome of at the end of July. If successful, this project will enable Aber Food Surplus to rent a larger high street premises.

“We believe surplus food redistribution is essential for every town in order to capture surplus food and enable its redistribution among the community. The ECO Food Sharing Hubs’ role has been encouraging and celebrating eating surplus food and saving food from waste in Aberystwyth.

“In a larger premises we will install a community kitchen, and host a range of food-related environmental and entrepreneurial activities. Although we are having to manage the risk of being unsuccessful in this competitive process, we are hopeful of realising this vision in the near future.”­