The Nightshelter may not be the first place that springs to mind when you think of a venue for a date night but for Jessie and Neil, it is one of their favourite places to spend quality time together.
Jessie first started volunteering at the Nightshelter at around the age of eighteen. Fast forward twelve years and she is now married and has just recently started teaming up with her husband Neil when cooking at the Nightshelter.
“Cooking at the Nightshelter is such a lovely thing to do,” explains Jessie. “We enjoy spending part of our evening doing something that’s for others and something less selfish. On a normal evening we would be going home to cook anyway so instead we just come here together and work as a team to make a meal for the residents. Depending how busy it is, we often get to sit down and eat too, we love having the chance to talk to the residents.”
Every meal at the Nightshelter is cooked and served by volunteers. “You don’t need to have amazing cooking skills,” explains Jessie. “Many of the meals are pre-prepared by other volunteers or the catering co-ordinator and it is just a case warming them up and getting vegetables ready.” Volunteer cooks help out from 6.30pm-8.30pm every day of the week.
Before helping at the Nightshelter, Neil volunteered as a special constable as he explains: “I enjoyed volunteering with the police but it was anti-social hours and it took me away from Jessie whereas volunteering at the Nightshelter is a chance to experience something together. We really like giving something back, it’s so rewarding and Jessie enjoys the chance to boss me around in the kitchen!”
Interested in volunteering at the Nightshelter?
Evening cooks help out at the Nightshelter from 6.30-8.30pm every night. Find out more about volunteering with us here.