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  • fionasarwar

Chocolate & love

I’m supporting calls for Parliament to be recalled to decide on urgent action to tackle the cost of living crisis. Every day I’m getting emails from people who literally don’t have enough money coming in to meet even the basic household bills. The UK Government keep telling us that “work is the best route out of poverty” but thousands of my constituents, and millions of people across the UK, are working all the hours they can and still can’t balance the family budget. It’s not going to get better any time soon unless the Government staps in – the economy is about to plunge into recession which means we can’t rely on increased economic activity to put money back in people’s pockets.

It was good to visit the YMCA in Glenrothes to get an update on all the great work they’re doing not only in Glenrothes but further afield. The Y has been an integral part of the town for over 60 years and during that time both the building and the services they provide have continually been adapting to meet the changing needs of the community. They also provide space for other third sector organisations such as DAPL. You can get a flavour of their full range of activities from their web site. As my visit was on a Monday morning the Over 50’s Ladies Badminton Group were limbering up for their weekly game. It was nice chatting to them but when they started talking about finding a spare racquet I remembered I had another appointment!

Another fascinating visit was to the new warehouse and distribution centre recently opened by Chocolate & Love, an internationally known supplier of organic and ethically sourced chocolate. It can be very difficult to find out exactly where the chocolate we buy comes from and concerns are often raised about cacao produced by slave labour or child labour finding its way into our shops. Chocolate & Love is a small enough company that the owners can visit their growers in person, and most of their bars tell you which farming co-operative supplied the vital cacao beans. They also produce several varieties of vegan chocolate so even people who can’t take dairy products can still enjoy their chocolate. They don’t sell direct to the public (and they don’t sell to the big supermarkets) but it’s worth looking out for their chocolate especially in independent delis and food stores.

I’m halfway through my summer surgery tour – the first since the start of the pandemic. This summer I’ve had surgeries arranged in Kennoway, East Wemyss, Buckhaven , Methil, Leslie, Coaltown of Balgonie, Markinch, Thornton, Cardenden and Glenrothes. You can book an appointment by phoning 01592 759335 or email my constituency office.

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