“CFINE is an organization driven by the needs and aspirations of the people in the North East of Scotland. At the core of the organization there exists a commitment to the local community, and a belief in social equality. This way of working drives constant innovation and enables CFINE to deliver projects different from many other social enterprises. The organization continually adapts and develops programs and services to meet the changing needs of the community. They began with the aim of reducing food poverty and hunger, and have grown to offer a wide range of support services. Each support service addresses a different social issue and the organization believes all of these issues are connected. CFINEs CEO Dave Simmers believes “this is what makes the organization different from many other social enterprises across the country,” there is no limit to the number of issues they aim to tackle.
In the beginning CFINE set out to improved health and reduce hunger through its network of food co-ops. Now the organization addresses a wide range of social issue through its educational programs such as a community training kitchen and workshop called Cook at the ‘Nook, which offers healthy-minded cooking classes. There are experts on site to offer financial advice on issues like debt and budgeting. The ‘Roots and Shoots’ project supports ex- offenders through, letting them gain work experience. CFINE is also a member of the Syrian Refugees Action Groups in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire. Finally, new for 2017 is ‘Tuk In’, an innovative development using an electric tuk tuk to promote healthy eating and reduce food waste.
In addition to the innovative projects, CFINE has built relationships with several support organizations in the region. This network enables CFINE to give and receive substantial support, significant retailers and their supply chains provide vast quantities of food that enable the organization to deliver its FareScheme.”