In December 2015 the Virgin Money Foundation, the independent charitable foundation launched by Virgin Money, announced that it had awarded its first round of individual grants to 25 charitable organisations across the North East region with a total of £1m being donated.
One of the organisations who benefited from the North East fund 2015 is Food Nation who have set up their first one-of-a kind healthy eatery Harissa, which offers a range of dishes using the finest ingredients which are all low in fat, salt and sugar.
Food Nation is a leading food and nutrition social enterprise, based in Newcastle. Starting out as a charity, Food Nation converted to a community interest company (CIC) in 2011 and has grown from 1 staff member in 2007 to 16 paid staff and 30+ volunteers today.
The vision of Food Nation is to inspire people about good food, focusing on working with the most disadvantaged communities in Newcastle. Food Nation uses food to enhance the quality of lives and give people the skills and knowledge needed for them to have the best possible health and wellbeing.
Funding from the Virgin Money Foundation has helped Food Nation to open their healthy restaurant and is paying for the salary of a Restaurant and Training Manager for the first 12 months of employment. After the first 12 months, when the grant comes to an end, this position will continue and be 100% sustained by Harissa generated income.
Jamie Sadler, Managing Director of Food Nation, said:
We would like to say a massive thank you to the Virgin Money Foundation for supporting us in opening a healthy and sustainable takeaway restaurant in Newcastle. Food Nation wants to create a shining example of how changes to a standard takeaway restaurant can make a positive impact towards tackling important socio-cultural, public health and environmental issues.”
Harissa Kitchen opened its doors for a very busy weekend on Friday 1st of July, to view the menu visit their website and if it tickles your fancy, you can book a table by calling 0191 261 5501.