A large crowd gathered in St David’s Church, Naas on Sunday 23 October. The occasion was the launch of Food for the Sole cookbook. It is a cookbook with a difference, as proceeds will help change lives. Bishop Pat Storey, Church of Ireland Bishop of Meath and Kildare performed the launch.
A packed programme included musical items from the Baldonnel Singers and St David’s choir. Those attending the launch included family, friends and supporters from all parts of the community. It also included members of Naas parish as well as people from the rest of the dioceses of Meath and Kildare.
The dioceses of Meath and Kildare has been running ‘Good for the Sole’, a project in partnership with Leprosy Mission Ireland. Leprosy still exists in some parts of the world and particularly in India. The effects on those who suffer from it are profound.
Last year members of the dioceses raised €41,000 to buy sandals, made out of recycled tyres. Sandals help protect the feet of those who suffer from leprosy in India.
For some people the sandals come too late and their feet are already badly damaged. Life changing foot surgery gives leprosy sufferers a new lease of life. It also means they can work and earn a living. Foot surgery only costs €50, which includes medical care, hospital stay and aftercare.
Rhonda Willoughby is the author and producer of Food for the Sole. She had the vision for the cookbook as she learned of the impact of leprosy. The cookbook is packed full of recipes, photographs as well as ‘Thoughts for the Day’. Each cookbook sells for €10. Five cookbooks will raise enough money to buy a life changing foot surgery.
“The best thing about cookery is that all your experiments are edible!” said Rhonda Willoughby. She continued, “I realised that it was possible to extend the readers recipe and change a life at the same time”. She lives in Naas and is an Honorary Secretary in the dioceses of Meath and Kildare. She is passionate about food and cookery with over 10 years experience in the food industry. Rhonda has previously written the food column for Living It magazine.
In launching Food for the Sole Bishop Pat Storey said, “It is inspiring to see what can happen when someone has a vision to do something for others. I have also been struck by the support and goodwill from local people and businesses for this venture by Rhonda that will change lives”.