Nick Loosley, 2020 Kiwibank Local Hero - Te Pou Toko o te Tau.
Nick Loosley is the proud founder of the charity, Everybody Eats and the 2020 Kiwibank Local Hero - Te Pou Toko o te Tau. Everybody Eats was established over two years ago. He has saved more than 30 tonnes of good food from going into landfills and provided more than 30,00 restaurant-quality meals to people.
We caught up with Nick and asked him a few questions about receiving this honourable award and the greater impact it has had on Everybody Eats.
How did it feel to receive the 2020 Kiwibank New Zealand Local Hero of the Year Award?
Being nominated for and receiving awards is always a surprise. It's never on my mind and I often forget that people think of the work I do as worthy of such awards! To receive the award was amazing though. To be recognised for an award that has nominations from across the country was really validating for our concept and the work we do.
What does this award mean to you and your team behind Everybody Eats?
The award is really an award for all our volunteers, rather than me individually. It was a huge boost for a lot of our volunteers, who feel very proud to be part of an organisation getting recognition like this.
What was your initial reaction in receiving this award?
I'll be honest I knew I was getting the award on the night, so there wasn't really a shock or surprise. I think I found out over the phone or email!
What was your driving force in establishing Everybody Eats and your advice to New Zealanders wanting to create something similar?
Seeing an issue (Food Waste) and knowing there are simple solutions that also help to solve other problems. It was the icing on the cake when I realised we could solve social problems (isolation/lack of community etc) with food. My advice to people is do your research and test your concept in conversations with the right people, but don't get bogged down with business plans etc. Just get started and learn as you go.
How has this award impacted Everybody Eats in providing meals to your community?
Receiving the award has raised our profile so while we haven't measured it, it will have made us slightly busier. It has also made a lot of our vulnerable customers understand more about what we do, why we do it and the impact it's having.