Making Christmas merry for those in need in our communities

There are so many great community projects in our city but I want to highlight three that are very close to my heart. Appetite for Change run by Eileen Inglis, The Real Junk Food Project run by Donna McArdle and Cooking Up a Storm is run by chef and restaurant owner, Colin Hinds.


Appetite for Change was started by Eileen Inglis. Her vision was to bring the things she loved together (people, food, spaces) to address some pressing public health issues that seemed never to be out of the news, and were being experienced by people she knew. Namely, loneliness and isolation and food insecurity.

Donna McArdle is the co-founder of The Real Junk Food Project who’s aim is to raise awareness of the issue of food waste, help people to eat and cook better and instigate change towards a more sustainable, efficient and just food system.

Cooking Up a Storm is run by award winning Chef Colin Hinds and is the Social Conscience of his restaurant, Kilted Lobster in Stockbridge. They truly believe in influencing and supporting our community, our city and our country through simple and practical projects. All profits from the restaurant go towards funding their projects.

Every Tuesday, they close the restaurant to the general public, inviting families and individuals facing financial hardship to complimentary dine with them.
They offer workplace & job training for school leavers and individuals with barriers to work with bespoke training leading to Industry jobs.
​They offer bespoke cookery classes for those wishing to learn how to cook inspiring, healthy and nutritious food on a budget and hold cookery classes for individuals diagnosed with food related health conditions such as diabetes or food allergens.

These three fabulous charity/social enterprise projects are about to host their third Festive Feast which sees up to 80 people treated to a three-course meal at a city centre restaurant in Edinburgh on Christmas Day – all cooked by Chef Colin Hinds and hosted by Donna McArdle, Eileen Inglis and a wee army of volunteers. The guests are mostly families who’ve been using food banks and other support agencies.

In a time when isolation, homelessness, poverty and hunger are real issues, it’s wonderful and heart warming to know that there are many other worthwhile projects out there in our city that are doing amazing work for those in our communities.

If you would like to know more about any of their projects head over to their Facebook pages, visit their website, dine at the Kilted Lobster and attend one of the many events hosted by Appetite for Change and The Real Junk Food Project. Your time and money do make a difference.

Appetite for Change


The Real Junk Food Project Facebook


Kilted Lobster Facebook –

Kilted Lobster, 112 St Stephen Street, Stockbridge, Edinburgh. Tel : 0131 2206677

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