Pathfinders’ Charlotte Robinson at the skate park with Edward, Janelle and Rhiannon. Pumpkin soup will be served tomorrow at noon.
Pathfinders’ Charlotte Robinson at the skate park with Edward, Janelle and Rhiannon. Pumpkin soup will be served tomorrow at noon. Trevor Veale

Teaching skills while filling bellies

A WELFARE organisation has found a unique way to teach work skills while feeding people in need.  

Not-for-profit company Pathfinders is holding a Pumpkin Run, during which pumpkins grown on its farms in Armidale are delivered to at-risk people and service providers across NSW.  

Pathfinders Family Referral Service's Charlotte Robinson said it was a 360-degree service teaching skills to young people while feeding others.  

"We have a lot of out- of-home care residential houses and our residential kids go on our farms to learn skills and get qualifications that prepare them for the workforce," Ms Robinson said.  

"This year we harvested seven tonnes of pumpkin and two tonnes of potatoes - our young people harvested all of them and will deliver them from Armidale to Sydney on the Pumpkin Run, where we give them out to homeless people and service providers.  

"We're starting the Mid North Coast part of the Pumpkin Run here tomorrow at the Brelsford Park skate park."  

Ms Robinson said the pumpkins will be used to prepare a delicious soup for anyone who wants a taste.  

"We will be the cooking pumpkins with kids from Junaa Buwa, which is a residential rehab facility for young people, so they'll be making the soup and learning a bit about cooking.  

"Then we'll bring the soup down to the skate park to give to kids on holidays and at-risk youth.  

"Whoever wants some pumpkin soup can come on down and have some, and anyone who has questions about our services is welcome to have a chat.  

"Or if you're after some tips on growing pumpkins - we certainly have a few of those."  

The service also holds a monthly barbecue at the skate park to highlight its services to local young people.  

The Mid North Coast Pumpkin Run will continue on to Kempsey, Port Macquarie and Taree.  

Soup will be ready to eat at the skate park from noon tomorrow.



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