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Nourished for Nil co-founder Christina McBeth finalist in Person of the Year!

Christina McBeth in action!

Ever since Christina McBeth was a young girl, she has been passionate about social issues.Helping others, sustainability and her hate of waste created the ideal platform to start a food rescue initiative.

In the past year, what was once an idea has flourished into something bigger than she can fathom, making her the perfect finalist for the Hawke’s Bay Today Person of the Year.

As Nourished for Nil co-founder, McBeth, along with Louise Saurin, has a mission to rescue surplus food that is good enough to eat but no longer good enough to sell and redistribute it within the community.

Christina was left speechless upon hearing the news that she had become a finalist, an achievement she was “humbled” by.

“I’m humbled and to be honest a little bit undeserving because I feel like I’ve only just landed on the scene this year and I feel like I’m just getting started.”

She said she was “really grateful for how the work has been received this year and I also feel like it is definitely not by any stretch just me”.

For both Linda Calder and Brian Lawrence, they didn’t have to think twice before nominating the Havelock North mum of two who “gives her time selflessly and tirelessly”.

“She gives so much back to the community and Nourished for Nil has been such a huge success in a really short space of time and it’s all really down to what she has done and her desire to make it work,” Mrs Calder said.

The volunteer at Nourished for Nil believed the co-founder was “completely selfless” and put everyone above herself.

“She spends hours and hours every week supporting people in our community who for whatever reasons need some help with their food but the real bonus is the food that is no longer going to our landfill.”

On any given day between 100 and 200 people queue outside their premises at the old Tremains building located next to the self-service Gull petrol station on Karamu Rd, from 4.30pm-5.30pm on week days.

Of that, Mrs McBeth believes up to 85 per cent of recipients were in need of food, lessening the cost of their already high food bills, while a smaller percentage wanted to support the cause.

However, helping those in need is an added bonus to their ethos of addressing food waste.

They are “seeing where the road takes them” and are hoping to increase donations from bigger suppliers and give more to people – one day perhaps becoming a “free supermarket” of sorts like ones already established overseas.

Currently, they have about 25 regular suppliers, and 60 volunteers, of which 25 help out at any one time.

Mid-way through the year, Mrs McBeth, decided to stop working as a chiropractor and focus on her passion for the time being.

Fellow nominator Brian Lawrence said it has all come down to Christina’s vision and dedication.

“With the vision Christina has of Zero Food Waste in Hawke’s Bay, by setting up Nourished for Nil has prevented tonnes and tonnes of food being sent to the landfills in Hawke’s Bay.

Story published in Hawke's Bay Today.

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