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The Challenge

How to create a sense of belonging and help feed Newquay’s homeless community.

Helping Cornwall's homeless community

investment & budget management


Newquay, Cornwall


2013 – Present


Engine Room & Real Ideas Organisation

The RIO solution 

What started as a six-week healthy eating project, Soul Food was such a success it carried on and is now been running for five years. 

It’s run by mum and foster carer Beth Mitchell.  She feeds around 25 people for just £1.50 a head at the Newquay centre each Thursday evening. Everyone who attends chips in to prepare the food, lay tables and tidy up. Helping to build a sense of community, belonging and purpose that many miss in their daily lives.

Beth’s tiny budget is boosted with donations of food from well-wishers and local supermarkets but she’s now keen on securing a more regular income. So RIO’s been helping her put together a business model, apply for crucial funding and register to become a Community Interest Company.

There are big plans for the future.  Opening up on a Wednesday evening with help from a dedicated team of teenage supporters, finding a more permanent base and kitting out a catering truck – so Soul Food can get out to festivals and host corporate events. Generating an income to help feed and support even more people.

Stats and Facts

  • Feeds around 25-30 people a time
  • Runs from The Newquay Centre
  • Relies on public & supermarket donations
  • Aims to expand & branch out to festivals
How The Project Was Received

The help from RIO has been vital really because I think it’s going to help us in the next stage. I have lots and lots of ideas that I can absolutely run away with. It’s nice to come back to somebody who says: ‘Right okay let’s really focus. Let’s get this a bit more directed’. So I think that for me has been the biggest help that they’ve given me. One thing you get is that they are passionate about what you are doing so that’s really supportive.

Beth MitchellOwner of Soul Food

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