28 May 2020
Hot steamed pudding baked for those in emergency accommodation
Last Friday, Rotorua Lakes Council staff and the Salvation Army combined resources and baked 200 servings of hot steamed pudding for people currently living in emergency accommodation in Rotorua.
The idea was sparked after hearing about the effort a local couple, who run the charity Feeding Rotorua, were making to provide hot meals to people currently living in hotels and motels because of the COVID-19 response. The couple, who prefer to fly under the radar, used to regularly cook hot kai for, and share a meal with, those sleeping rough in Rotorua’s parks and streets. When we entered Alert Level 4, the couple were contracted by social service agencies to cook for everyone that had been placed in emergency accommodation during lockdown – between 180 and 200 meals per night! They’ve kept in contact with Council’s Civil Defence team throughout this process and have also been supported by C3 Rotorua and the Baptist Churches who have helped out with the cooking a couple of times a week.
The funding for contracting this service has now run out and Civil Defence has stepped in to fill the gap for the next few weeks. Having heard about the effort this couple put into this service, well over and above what they were contracted to do, some of Council’s Emergency Operations Centre team felt they wanted to do something to honor this work and to do their bit.
So, with donated ingredients from the Salvation Army, 12 large steamed puddings were baked and split into 200 portions. These were then delivered to the couple’s home who delivered them on to those currently living in emergency accommodation.
Rotorua Lakes Council’s, Aroha Clements, was chief baker and said she was inspired by the couple who quietly and selflessly helped others.
“Hearing about all they had done for others, taking nothing for themselves, not even a contribution towards their own power bill even though most of the cooking was done in their own home, made me want to do my bit too and help them in some way.
“This was just a small thing I could do that would be a treat and bring a smile to the faces of those currently living through some very challenging and uncertain times.”
The puddings of course were incredibly well received!