A POWERHOUSE meals on wheels effort is now serving up to 1,000 meals a day to feed vulnerable people during the coronavirus crisis.

Inverclyde Community Action Response Group (ICARG) is running at full tilt from the kitchen it has set up at the Community Development Trust unit at Devol in Port Glasgow.

It operates from there three days a week and is also active at Gourock's Cafe Continental.

Louise Hunter of ICARG said: "Tuesday is our biggest production day with over one thousand meals produced across both kitchens.

"On the remaining days, we produce 500 full meals including veg and a portion of fruit.

"We’ve started delivering 3,200 pieces of fruit to Branchton Community Centre to accompany the meals we jointly produce.

"By doing so, this has allowed Belville Community Garden to focus on producing recipe boxes and we have also been able, through our fundraising efforts, to give £5,000 to CVS Inverclyde for food vouchers."

Louise says they use local suppliers for meat, fruit and vegetables.

Louise said: "Our suppliers are local, with fruit and veg coming from both Inverclyde Fresh and MVM with butcher meat given generously at a wholesale price from Robert Alexander, Port Glasgow.

"This means that we are able to support local businesses while safe in the knowledge that their produce is of the highest quality, enabling us to provide very nutritious meals."

The organisation couldn't do the job it does without the help of dedicated volunteers.

The meal campaign is supported by 10 volunteers working from Devol, who are involved in everything from food preparation to 'tubbing up' and delivering dishes to both Belville and Branchton for onward delivery.

Louise says friendships have been formed though the volunteering and it has proved very rewarding for those giving up their time to help others.

She said: "The volunteers not only see it as a way of giving back, but they love the social aspect, the camaraderie, and the new friendships that have been formed.

"Several feel that it has helped with their mental health while others feel that getting them out of the house has got to be a good thing."

Any company interested in donating to the project can email louise@creativeinverclyde.com while individuals who want to make a donation can do so online via a Salvation Army Just Giving page: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/port-glasgow-salvation-army?