Kind baker rallies around for those less fortunate

Helping hand: Lauren Jenkinson

Helping hand: Lauren Jenkinson

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A kind-hearted baker has been rallying round her friends and family this Christmas to help feed the homeless.

Lauren Jenkinson, who works at Lathams of Broughton, is helping to make hundreds of sandwiches from festive leftovers to give to people on the streets today.

The 23-year-old has already set up a workshop to teach baking and cookery to homeless and marginalised people in Manchester, and is now looking to help people closer to home.

Speaking earlier in the week, she said: “I am going to try and get as many of my friends and family to make a sandwich with their leftovers and I’m going to go out around Preston, Blackpool and Lancaster and try to hand out sandwiches.

“There’s not many people shopping on Christmas Day and there’s not a lot open – I get the impression they may not eat for the entire day.”

Lauren, who lives in Catterall, near Garstang, approached the Mustard Tree Foundation in Manchester about the possibility of setting up cookery workshops, and hopes to set up something similar in Preston in the new year.

She ran her first workshop earlier this month, helping a group of people to make mince pies.

She said: “They all absolutely loved it, it was so much better than I expected and when it was over they were all asking about the next one. And I absolutely loved it, I can’t wait to go back in January.

“They said they learned things they never new, they learned how to make the pastry and had a really good time.

“And they got to socialise with people from outside the foundation and they really enjoyed just learning.

“It teaches them to be in control of their own lives.

“They learn how to support themselves, even if it’s just making a meal and not having to buy a ready meal.”

On Christmas Eve, Lauren also plans to take food and drink to the homeless in Manchester, and Lathams helped by providing oranges and apple pies for the project.

Mustard Tree Foundation operations manager Jessica Stewart said the charity worked with homeless, marginalised and vulnerable people, and acted as a “hub” for people to go to.

She said: “To see somebody who wants to do such a good thing, she’s so young, and I just think it’s great she’s got that desire to help people.

“She’s just amazing, she’s a really good teacher and they all really loved it.

“Cooking from scratch is such a good skill because it’s cheaper than buying ready made.

“It really touched me. Three people brought me a mince pie out of their batch and thought they had really achieved something.”