I am in my mid-twenties and am living independently after having moved out of Bristol.
I found out about The MAZI project through 16-25 Independent People, a charity that housed me when I was homeless.
Before I started receiving the Meal-Kits, I was too anxious to leave the house to go to the supermarket, and I didn’t have the funds to buy myself a full food shop anyway. As a result of this, I was living off of food banks, and random bits and bobs from the corner shop. My cooking was limited and not very nutritional. I think a part of it was I was also feeling rubbish and so was eating badly as this is what I felt I deserved.
At first, it was overwhelming to receive such a bounty of fresh food, and I didn’t trust that it would be reliable to turn up every week, but it did. I started to enjoy being able to choose what recipes I would get, and would branch out to try more adventurous stuff, that I never would normally cook with. The financial burden of eating was lifted and this enabled me to free up some money to be able to do things I liked with my time. It also gave me a much more balanced diet which included fresh vegetables. As the food kept turning up I started to feel more and more deserving of it.
I like that it helped me restore my relationship with food, without me having to put too much work in. I feel naturally excited to cook now, rather than it being a chore. And I know that my physical and mental health is better for it.
The legacy of cooking better and making food from fresh ingredients stays with me today, despite having left the service. I regularly cook a few meals that I know I like and I know the recipe off the top of my head. I also have an interest in new recipes and trying new things. This confidence is so freeing.
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