My Friend Becky…….

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Is currently undertaking a Gap year, working for CALM Africa, a charity project based in Kampala, Uganda, working with local people, to help educate people with disabilities, children and young women. Becky decided whilst doing her ‘A’ levels last year that she would like to do something to ‘Give Back’ to a community, she felt very fortunate having had a great education; loving, supportive family and friends, and like most of us in the western world today – enough money to not have to worry about going without too much. Becky wanted to raise a considerable amount of cash so that once she arrived at the project she would be given a say in how the money was spent – she already had some insights into how different life is in Kampala compared to London; and she wanted to make sure that she raised enough money to make a difference. But how? Sponsored Walk? Boring. Sponsored Run? Too much like hard work. Sponsored Bouncy Castle Bounce? No, did that when I was five. Tandem Parachute jump? Too expensive! Then Becky had the LIGHTBULB moment…….why not do something that I LOVE doing which will benefit others too…….BAKE, BAKE, BAKE!! So Becky started making the most tempting, mouth-watering array of cakes and pastries you have ever seen… Chocolate fudge cake, Welsh cake, Victoria sandwich layered with fresh cream and raspberries, banana bread, ginger loaf, bara brith, riciarelli biscuits, brownies, lemon drizzle, malteser cake, to name but a few. Becky’s dad, Gareth, was even persuaded to make some of his famous cheese and chive scones, which he was very proud to contribute, in fact when he announced that he was going to make them in a somewhat hen-pecked tone (faked) his chest puffed out like a proud lion, which indicated to me that he was really rather looking forward to making them for his daughter’s fundraiser and was very pleased to have been asked! Becky invited all of her mum and dads’ friends and neighbours for a coffee and cake morning, donations happily accepted, and set to making some raffle prizes too. She filled kilner jars with dry ingredients for different recipes and decorated them with the method on pretty tags and ribbons, and made a lunch hamper with speciality teas, breads, cakes, wine and cheese for the lucky winner to take home and eat some more! Hoards of people turned up, most arriving at 10 and staying until 12 to take advantage of the tasty fayre….I allowed myself one cake per hour, but turned up early so that I could manage 3! Friendships were reinforced; neighbours who had lived on the street for 20 years met each other for the first time (quite shocking!), but arranged to call on each other for tea;  and new neighbours with young children organised babysitting circles and voted to have a coffee morning every month so that all the older ladies could look after all the children, while the younger ones chilled! The atmosphere was wonderful, everyone was relaxed, full and surrounded by friends with a common purpose – to raise money for a great cause and to honour a bright teenage woman with the courage to go off and do something amazing. Finally everyone was packed off with more plates of cakes for tea, the last person stayed for lunch, and Becky counted her cash. £570!! What with that and her Justgiving page, she will have raised over £1000 to spend on the CALM Africa project; I can’t wait to hear all about it. Becky has promised she will keep in touch with Heart Kitchen and let us know what life is like in Kampala.

Author: Celia

The Rambler, AKA Celia Dulieu
Celia has been sharing food, wine, recipes and friendship with Simon and Sue Gale for more than 15 years.
In a former life she was a mass caterer, working for large companies such as Selfridges, London; but after moving to the countryside with husband, 2 kids and dog, she resurrected her love of food, - particularly by entertaining her large extended family to lunches ,sharing informal get togethers with friends, and developing her small but productive kitchen garden. She is passionate about all things to do with food and wine; from where it is produced to how it arrived on her doorstep.
Celia’s love of meeting people, visiting places and trying different things has culminated in being invited to get involve with writing up the experiences of the Heart Kitchen and sharing her love of food with you through her ramblings.