Bags of Taste and Tuck by Truck – making a difference together across communities


At Bags of Taste, we couldn’t do what we do without working with partners and Tuck by Truck are one of our key partners that support Bags of Taste in Newham, Tower Hamlets and Walthamstow.

Tuck by Truck support people with learning disabilities and autism to gain work skills and find work.

We chatted to Steve Irvine, Service Manager in Newham who told us how it all works.

“At Tuck by Truck, our main work involves packing boxes full of snacks and drinks and delivering them to businesses in different locations across London. So working alongside Bags of Taste through shopping, packing and delivering their bags to people in their own homes fits perfectly within our work plus it’s also hugely motivating for the team.

The team here start as volunteers and can work towards being a paid delivery assistants and the Bags of Taste work has helped them to learn a host of new skills and offered them a new challenge.”

“Usually we’d do between 8 to 16 deliveries a week and it’s broken down into stages.

Everyone loves the opportunity to do the shopping for the food and this part helps the team to learn about shopping and gives them experience of doing this in real time. They might be required to ask if they need help or can’t find anything. For some, this might be their first opportunity to go shopping.

We have a great system for making up and packing the bags back at the centre and this is always quite good fun. It’s like a mini conveyer belt with the food, the spice bags and the coriander and oil. Everyone knows how important it is to be accurate and make sure that the correct spices and the right amounts go into the bags.”

“The final part is when we go and personally deliver the Bags of Taste bags to people across the local communities. We’ll usually do this on a Wednesday or Thursday and this is done by a member of staff and one delivery assistant who go together in the van. At first, some of the team were a bit uncertain about this bit and were unsure about speaking to people but they didn’t know. But now, they are confident in knocking on people’s doors unaided and they now enjoy saying hello and giving the bags to the students.

We all absolutely love working with Bags of Taste and supporting them with their deliveries. It’s a great opportunity to everyone to be visible in the local community but it’s also hugely rewarding for everyone to know that our part is the first step to helping people to start cooking healthy, affordable food from scratch.”

Tuck by Truck’s supported employment services are also based in Aylesford, Erith and Herne Bay, in Kent. You can find out more here

Ashley said this about working at Tuck by Truck

“The staff are really nice and friendly. I like chatting with them. I am always busy here. I make up boxes for customers and change them, if they want different snacks”

Read more below about what people can learn at Tuck by Truck. 

People who come to work at Tuck by Truck start as volunteers or paid delivery assistants. Each role is different, but whatever they do people build up their skills, gain work experience to put on their CV, and grow in confidence.

There are lots of different skills you’ll learn here, from packing boxes and counting money to delivering trays to customers and health and safety checks.

We’ve also helped people to go on work placements or find paid work with other organisations. We can help you to do this, when you feel confident.