Food & Drink

Lunch Positive feed LGBT choirs visiting the city

Gary Hart June 20, 2015

Lunch Positive, the HIV charity, provided the catering for the successful Hand in Hand choral event staged at Brighton Dome over the weekend of June 13-14.

The Lunch Positive team of volunteers
The Lunch Positive team of volunteers at the picnic in Queens Park

THE event which brought together LGBT choirs from all over the UK and Ireland was jointly organised by Brighton Gay Men’s Chorus and the Rainbow Chorus, who commissioned the HIV charity to feed the singers from all the choirs during their stay in the city.

This was the largest event Lunch Positive had ever catered for, and involved all of its 32 volunteers with the additional support of friends and other volunteers from the choirs and public.

On Saturday, June 13, Lunch Positive provided hot meals, sandwiches and five separate tea and coffee services for 600 people, and on the Sunday a picnic for 150.

In addition to raising funds for the charity, it was an invaluable team building event with everyone involved in all aspects of putting it together. Volunteers worked over the course of two weeks in preparation, giving over 300 hours in a wide range of roles.

Gary Pargeter
Gary Pargeter

Gary Pargeter, Volunteer Project Manager: We were thrilled to be asked to cater for this amazing choral event. This was our biggest community team challenge yet, and everyone involved was truly amazing. Volunteers took on extra responsibilities and undertook new tasks, were enthusiastic, engaging, professional and worked extremely hard, all in the fullest cooperation with each other. It was fantastic to be part of. They are a terrific team!”

Some of the charity’s newer volunteers gave their insight into the weekend’s events.

Simon, Lucy, Tony, Emmy, Caroline and Emily, each added: “My time volunteering with Lunch Positive has been great fun, rewarding and educational. Getting the chance to help at the Hand in Hand event was a great privilege. As ever on the day, we just all worked well together and laughed.”

“It is always a pleasure to serve the LGBTQ and HIV+ communities, but at Hand in Hand we were catering a large-scale event which was both challenging, rewarding and enjoyable. As a young queer person it makes me happy to see my community not only surviving, but thriving, smiling and inspiring too.”

“It was a pleasure to play a part in such a fun, enthusiastic and friendly event!  Thank you Hand in Hand for allowing us to show what we are capable of and also provide the opportunity to raise funds to ensure Lunch Positive continues to make a valuable contribution to those in our local community.”

“I’m really interested in community building and activism and Hand in Hand was a great opportunity to promote Lunch Positive’s important services and increase its visibility. I’m proud to be a part of this group, and outreach and social events such as this one are important part of community building.”

“Loved volunteering at Hand in Hand working there with the volunteers from the choirs and at the evening performance, it felt very much that the local HIV charities were included in that circle of friendship.”

“This is just like the other family that I’ve been looking for – along with cooking and washing up with them!”

For more information about Lunch Positive, click here:

For more information about Hand in Hand, click here:

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