October 2023 Summary

October 2023 Summary

'Tis the season of mists and mellow fruitfullness' - or lot's of rain perhaps? As I write this reflection of October - it is infact a blue sky November day - crisp and cold. I hope you are all keeping cosy and well. I've manged to get COVID this week - so do take care.

We started the month with mine & Andy's 1st anniversary. It's been a whole year of marriage! That weekend we attended a conference by Durham Business School all about scaling up small to medium business - but we managed to have some fun too. We managed to walk up all the steps to the top of Durham Cathedral.

October was a busy and diverse month as usual. We have received many requests for xmas buffets so i've been responding to those. We work a lot with Corporate partners and we were delighted to be a part of AtkinsRealis Social Value conference - talking to young people just setting off on their career journy about the importance of social value in a business context and what they can do. We provided snacks and a biscuit decorating break out session (some very artisitc folk about) as well as delivering a talk about what we do at Big River.

Andy & Gail presentation AtkinsRealisBiscuit decorating break out activity
We have now officially launched our Super Scotty the Stottie book and these are now for sale in our shop and on line. Scotty is searching for his Super Power - he even visits the children at the Freeman Hospital to see what their super power is! Half profits are going to Chuf - Children's Heart Unit Fund at the Freeman. We even have Scotty the Stottie T shirts and hoodies (Adults & Children sizes available). Help make our little Scotty fly if you can. We even have pay it forward options with some books and cuddly stotties being donated to the children in hospital and other children's charities across the North East.
Scotty the stottie cakeChuf

 I've received some lovely photo's of people receiving our weekly Kindness Cookie. It's National Kindness Week next week - so we will be sending our 6 x Cookies - anywhere across the UK. You can nominate anyone across the UK here and it's absolutely free - no catch - just Kindness.   https://bigriverbakery.myshopify.com/pages/kindness-cookie

Kindness Cookie Big River BakeryKindness Cookie BRB

We have been part of a lovely project with the Baltic (Gateshead) and the Comfrey Project called CommuniTEA - using ingredients and recipe ideas from across cultures. Along with the group we created some very bespoke products for an event taking place on 25th November at The Baltic. Amazing what can happen with collaboration.

 We also had students from Northumbria University making pasties and scones and is a part of a series of activities with the University.

With the cold season now upon us, October also saw us change over to hot soup and a roll for our free Wednesday lunch offer. What could be nicer than a pot of home made soup - especially if you are cold and hungry?

Free soup and roll Big River BakeryLentil soup

October has also been the start of us supporting a local lady - Kaltouma - with her small business. She is now making falafel for us - which is delicious.

Kaltouma falafel

Well - I hope that has given you a flavour of what we have been up to at the bakery in October. As diverse as we are!

For those interested in numbers - here's how we have helped the local community through October - all with your support - so a big THANK YOU once again to you all x

Breakfasts to local schools = 200 = £600

Meals for homeless = 120 =  £900 (£545 in donated £5 cards  £355 BRB) At the end of October we were at 0 cards for homeless. We are supporting this out of any remaining crowdfunder monies from last year - but if you can spare a pay forward meal this winter for those in need - it would be most appreciated.

Wednesday free food for all -  4 days - 80 portions -£160

Free Kindness Cookies  - 4 x £10 = £40

Plus we endeavour to keep the products in our shop as low and affordable as possible.