The Pathway Café and Support Centre looks forward to 2022 

PATHWAY 12-21AAs 2021 draws to a close and 2022 arrives with a welcome sense of optimism, I always feel like this Advent period produces a need for both reflection and forward thinking
 
2021 has been an interesting year for everyone, particularly for us at Pathway. We have continued to remain open throughout the pandemic as it was very apparent that a lot of our most vulnerable clients needed us more than ever. In an otherwise uncertain and unsettling climate we provided a form of stability and consistency that may not have been available elsewhere for them
 
PATHWAY 12-21BWe have worked really hard to remain positive and committed to our cause and it has been a really rewarding process to be at the frontline during these testing times
 
The best part of the year was reopening as a café in September. The takeaway provision we had been offering was helpful but also basic. It always felt like the holistic element of what we offer, and the signposting and support was much more difficult to achieve in the takeaway format. Having all of our clients in through the door, sat at their tables and interacting with one another was a very humbling sight. The atmosphere we have at Pathway is such a positive and friendly one and the volunteers have also thrived in this environment too
 
We have been able to welcome back lots of our peer charities like Herring House and Dial, who are available during our meals for support and one to ones when needed. We have been able to rebuild strong relationships with lots of our regular customers and it is a much more wholesome offering that we now have. I now feel like we are not just about the food. It is much more than that
 
PATHWAY 12-21CPathway serves around 250 hot meals every single week, and has over 300 registered customers. Our chef, Luke, resourcefully uses donations of food to produce healthy, filling, and satisfying meals and the feedback we have had from our customers since reopening has been amazing
 
So, as I look back on 2021, I am thankful that we were able to weather the storm of the last 18months and come out of the other side more motivated, encouraged, and positive than ever. I am grateful that all of the staff and customers have remained healthy and that we have managed to maintain the bonds we have forged within the community
 
As we look towards 2022, the most exciting development is on the horizon. We will be opening as a Trussell Trust foodbank in early March. This feels like a natural progression for our charity and this service will compliment what we currently offer
 
I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has supported Pathway in any way throughout this year, be is through donations, good wishes, prayer or otherwise. We wouldn’t be able to do what we do without the generosity of the Parish community and I want you all to know that we really are making a difference to the lives of some of the most vulnerable people in our town
 
I hope everybody has a peaceful and enjoyable festive period, and that 2022 brings hope, love and happiness to all
PATHWAY 12-21D
                    Jennifer King, Pathway Manager