Thameslink and NOAH serve food and kindness to Luton's homeless

The volunteers.
The volunteers.

Three Thameslink colleagues cooked up a hearty feast for Luton’s homeless and vulnerable.

As part of Thameslink’s ongoing partnership with NOAH Enterprise, Lucky Rahman, Samuel Darko and Victoria O’Reilly volunteered to cook at the charity’s Welfare Centre kitchen. They served up pan-fried chicken in a tomato and bacon sauce, rustic potatoes, sweet corn, and homemade rice pudding to more than 60 diners.

Rail Enforcement Team Leader Victoria O’Reilly, 36, who has lived and worked in Luton for nearly 18 years, said: “I have always been aware of NOAH, but it wasn't until I volunteered at the lunch that I realised how much they do behind the scenes. The kitchen not only serves three meals a day, but they also take time to educate and teach the users to cook and provide for themselves.”

Passenger Host Lucky, 43, who works in Luton, said: “It was a great experience volunteering for NOAH, and it gave me an insight into the rewarding work the charity does. I helped cut and prepare potatoes and then fried them into square chips. My colleagues prepared other items. We then served lunch to the homeless people in Luton.”

Father-of-three Samuel Darko, 41, who works as a Rail Enforcement Officer, said: “It was a very humbling experience. People enjoyed the meal and they came up and said thank you afterwards.”

Between April 2018 and March this year, NOAH served 17,273 lunches, 6,111 breakfasts and 7,472 soups.

NOAH’s head of welfare services Paul Prosser said: “We value the support we receive from GTR and the continued volunteer work by members of staff. Samuel, Lucky and Victoria were a great help in the kitchen and provided hot meals to people who may otherwise have gone hungry. They showed a real interest in helping people and in the work we do at NOAH. Without the invaluable help from volunteers, we wouldn’t be able to assist the thousands of people who come to us every year.”