Sarah Bentley

Posted on 12 September 2020

Sarah Bentley is the Founder of Made in Hackney - a charity and community cookery school that's making healthy, nourishing, local food available to society's most vulnerable. 

After ten years working as a print and radio journalist specialising in reggae dancehall music, Sarah had a conscious awakening 10 years ago. Following a period of learning – which included joining the blockade of an oil rig for the day and a life changing conversation with Indian activist Vandana Shiva – Sarah set up Made In Hackney in 2012.

Sarah says: "By working on re-localising food systems you're having a positive impact on a huge range of issues - food poverty, inequality, climate change, reducing corporate control of our food, health and wellbeing - it's a hugely inspiring and rewarding area to work in." 

Highlights

I came to London to meet new people from all around the world.

People spoke to me with no respect. They spoke to each other with no respect and it really lacked diversity.

Food is complicated, it’s connected to people’s family history or heritage or emotions.

I was in London and yet everyone I met was white.

I was always following stories that I felt dispelled prejudice or shone a light on something that was incredible but really underfunded or under-resourced.

At the age of 11 or 12, it really blew my mind that the world that had been presented to me in my small rural market town, was not really the world in its fullest picture.

I (had) to dig deeper and read deeper, I (couldn't) just accept what I (was) told.

I remember finding out how animals were transported from the farm to the slaughter house […] and feeling it’s wrong,

I love cooking.

You need to have a really good baseline of healthy food so that you stay well, vibrant and it helps you look after your mental health.

My journalism was an exploration into issues I was interested in and I let the experts do the talking.

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