Food For Life Wales
1416. Tarakanatha Dasa
Tarakanatha Dasa, from Cardiff, leads ‘Food for Life Wales’, a team of Hare Krishna monks and nuns alongside volunteers of all faiths, which distributes free, plant-based meals to vulnerable people and frontline workers in Wales.
Tarakanatha has been an active member of the Hare Krishna community for over 30 years, and has run a vegan and vegetarian cafe in Cardiff since 2017. With his restaurant and community spaces closed for lockdown, he wanted to continue helping to connect people through healthy food during the pandemic, promoting nutrition and wellbeing, and in the last few months, his team of 200 volunteers have distributed over 30,000 meals to hundreds of households.
In a personal letter to Tarakanatha, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:
“I wanted to write personally to thank you for your extraordinary efforts at ‘Food For Life Wales’ feeding tens of thousands of vulnerable people and our wonderful NHS workers.
“Your uplifting mission has brought nourishment and care to so many people and I am lost in admiration for the dedication of your army of volunteers who work tirelessly in the service of others.”
Secretary of State for Wales Simon Hart said:
“Tarakanatha and his team of volunteers have provided an inspiring service to ensure thousands of people across south Wales receive the meals they need during this crisis.
“I am humbled by Tarakanatha’s story and the volunteers’ achievements, and am extremely grateful for the hours of service they have contributed to benefit communities ranging from Barry to Pontypridd and Swansea.”
“I am very pleased, humbled and honoured to receive this Points of Light award. I accept this on behalf of our dedicated team of volunteers, that includes the cooks, veg choppers, delivery drivers, route organisers, packing team and all of those who helped organise this fantastic effort. This just goes to show, what we can achieve when we all pull together, together we are stronger. As the old adage says “the more you give, the more you grow”.”