Hungry for change: Edinburgh students open soup kitchen with a difference

The Refugee Community Kitchen is open every Tuesday from 12-2 pm. (Credit: EN4 News)

 

A group of Edinburgh University students have opened the city’s first Refugee Community Kitchen (RCK).

The weekly event, held inside the university’s on-campus chaplaincy, offers bowls of vegan soup and aims to provide the city’s refugees and those who are homeless a place to gather with the wider community.

“We decided to start the event originally as a part of a module we had in our business course to host an event, but we wanted it to be more meaningful than a one-off random event,” leading member Ella O’Reilly told EN4 News.

“While researching we came across RCK, it just really resonated with us all and here we are.

“It’s only our second week in doing this but it’s nice, it feels like we have a cute, wee growing community.”

Any money raised is put directly back into the core of Refugee Community Kitchen (RCK), giving more money and resources to other areas where the charity is based.

RCK has been serving food since 2015, starting off in Calais, France, but now reaching areas all across the globe.

The charity’s largest bases are found in Northern France and London.

Steve Bedlam, RCK co-founder, says:

“Not only do they [the charity] provide displaced or homeless people with hot meals, but they also give them a place to gather and connect.”

Edinburgh has a homeless population over over 3,000 people, while the city has welcomed more than 300 Syrian refugees since 2014,

To get involved in Edinburgh’s Refugee Community Kitchen head over to Edinburgh Universities Chaplaincy on a Tuesday between 12-2 pm.

Sex Education season 2 review: pushing conventional boundaries 

Netflix’s Sex Education is a British comedy-drama series which focuses on a group of young people trying to navigate sex and relationships (both romantic and platonic), as well as their own identities.

The second season of the comedy-drama, which stars Asa Butterfield as socially awkward high school student Otis, and Gillian Anderson as his sex therapist mother Jean, has been praised for introducing more taboo topics into the mainstream.

Viewers took to Twitter to praise both its maturity and the refreshing honesty with which it presented the awkwardness of adolescent sexuality.

The season opens with what can only be described as a masturbation montage to refresh your memory of how limitless the show’s boundaries are.

As for the plot, you follow several main storylines including several love triangles, drug abuse, a mass chlamydia outbreak and the school getting their sex education curriculum revamped.

While all this is going on, each episode also has an underlying theme of a niche sexual issue. While you follow a major storyline – the school’s sex education curriculum being completely restructured by Otis’ mum – you’re also following a smaller thread educating you on what douching is. And this is just one of many topics (see below for more).

The show’s ability to intertwine comedy with being informative is incredible. Every character featured is 3 dimensional, and for this, we have the writing and performances to thank. It’s effortlessly charming, effortlessly witty and just so effortlessly enjoyable to watch.

 

Tracks of the week reviewed: Hayley WIlliams, 070 Shake, Bombay Bicycle Club and Hasley

This week, we’ve got solo debuts, Kanye’s proposed next big thing and Twilight-era flashbacks.

Simmer (Song) – Hayley Williams

The first taste of Hayley Williams’ ‘Petals For Armor’ album dropped earlier this week. The Paramore front-woman said it was nice to call something ‘her own.’

‘Simmer’ was accompanied by a music video directed by Warren Fu (who regularly creates videos for The Strokes and Haim) in which Williams is seen running through a forest bathed in orange light and into a dark empty house where she smears herself in a brown paste.

The video’s atmosphere is similar to her Twilight single ‘Decode’ days – sharp camera movements and eerie greenery.

Lyrically, the song is incredibly deep. Williams delves into feelings of dealing with love and loss and the struggle between needing to be vulnerable but also protecting yourself.

Everything Else Has Gone Wrong (Album) – Bombay Bicycle Club

Trying to define Bombay Bicycle Club’s sound is a tricky task, as they’ve previously touched on post-punk jams, quiet folk, and electronic pop. And this album is almost a summary of it all.

Each song represents an era of their musical progression, but by doing this, the album comes off as quite middle of the road. It isn’t anything they haven’t done before, and it isn’t better than their previous effort.

This doesn’t mean it’s all bad, though. After a four year hiatus, it’s quite comforting to just have Bombay Bicycle Club back making music.

Modus Vivendi (Album) – 070 Shake

Danielle Balbuena, better known by her stage name 070 Shake, is most famous for her soft vocals used on Kanye West’s ‘Ghost Town’, which appeared on his eighth album ‘ye’.

She’s one of the most sought after women in the world to collaborate with, appearing on The Lion King soundtrack and with Lil Yachty, Jessie Reyez, DJ Khaled. Now, though, the release of her debut album, ‘Modus Vivendi’, sounds like a definitive statement – she is her own entity.

The album is built for festivals and clubs. The crooned vocals blended with a strong beat makes the sound one of a kind.

Manic (Album) – Halsey

When a pop star gets to a certain level of fame, they can lose the ability to relate to people. But not Halsey. Her lyrics are what makes her songs work: vulnerable and honest – far more appealing than catchy money-making hits which pop can be littered with.

Lyrically, she wrestles with self-destructive tendencies blowing up healthy relationships. “I could never hold a perfect thing and not demolish it,” she sings on the glitchy outro of “Forever … (is a long time).”

When listening, the album feels personal to her, and musically, ‘Manic’ is admirably haywire for an artist as mainstream as Halsey.

Listen to any of the songs we’ve included in this article below!

 

Tracks of the week reviewed: Selena Gomez, Shimmer, Soccer Mommy and The 1975

This week we’ve got husky come-backs, young protégés and a blast from the past.

Rare (Album) – Selena Gomez

Selena Gomez released her third album this week.

This is her first bit of music since 2015 after taking five years out to focus on her physical and mental wellness. Gomez is a sufferer of lupus and has had to undergo chemotherapy to treat it.

Throughout the album these subject matters are the major themes. However it is still an overwhelmingly upbeat album. It’s a real celebration of resilience and growth.

As a musician Selena’s main challenge has always been mastering her voice. It’s very low and understated. This album works so well as it sticks to intimate contemplation rather than attempting bravado.

And I Revel  (Album) – Shimmer

Shimmer’s new album is being described as “loud, messy and wrong”.

But don’t get that confused for it being bad. It’s receiving outstandingly high scores from music critics at the exact same time.

The quartet who have all previously individually been involved in other more “traditional” rock bands said they had became tired of “conforming to the norm” and banded together to create something different.

And this record is exactly that – experimental and utterly unique.

Circle the Drain (EP) – Soccer Mommy

22-year-old singer songwriter Sophie Allison, or better known as Soccer Mommy, dropped her latest EP this week.

Allison is in a league of a powerful growing crop of assertively independent female musicians – often opening shows for the likes of Vampire Weekend and Paramore.

Paramore’s Haley Williams even went as far as saying she felt like a proud big sister watching Sophie push through the “male dominated indie rock scene.”

This EP is packed full of vocals so silky that you almost overlook the sorrow inside the tales she sings of managing her own sadness.

These four songs are only the beginning as well with the rest of her album due to be released on February 28. Soccer Mommy is definitely someone to watch.

Me and You Go Together (Single) – The 1975

The latest 1975 single came out on Thursday. Me and You Go Together is an upbeat love song that many speculate is dedicated to FKA Twigs.

Back in August was the last time the band released a single. The song ‘People’ shocked many fans. It’s loud, screamy, emo and very angry. Quite off-brand for the band and it led to a lot of speculation to whether all their new releases would have a similar sound.

However Me and You Go Together seems to revert back into a pretty standard The 1975 pop record.

So if you’re a fan of traditional 1975 sounds then you’re in luck! But if you were looking forward to hearing their more unapologetic song-making style you might have to wait until their next record.

Listen to any of the songs we’ve included in this article below!

Gorgie City Farm campaign boosted by £27,000 cash injection from Edinburgh Council

Gorgie City Farm has been described as a “symbol of community”

An ailing community farm in Gorgie has received significant financial aid in its hour of need.

Edinburgh Council stated on Thursday that they will help Gorgie Farm with a £27,000 boost. If the cash input goes ahead, this will see Gorgie Farm add almost £30,000 to an already large cash pot to help improve the farm.

The Edinburgh local city farm went into liquidation on November 1. Soon after, a GoFundMe appeal was launched to save the much-loved establishment.

The crowdfunding campaign reached over £69,000 within the first two weeks and more than 11,000 people have shared the GoFundMe page so far.

Many also took to Twitter to show support with one user stating:“I really, really hope the farm can rise from these ashes, it will be a symbol of hope and community.”

As well as the council’s cash injection, a mystery donor has given £20,000 to help Gorgie City Farm to stay open. The campaign set up to save the site received an overwhelming amount of public support and donations in the first few days of being set up. The total amount so far is over £93,000.

Council Leader Adam McVey said the positive response to the crowdfunding is a sign of just how much people across Edinburgh value the attraction and described the level of interest as “encouraging”.

The recent donations and the boost from Edinburgh Council will take Gorgie farm to almost a £100,000 cash pot, this will help the farm improve and continue to survive in such a tough situation.

HOW TO MAKE BANGING MEAT-FREE CHICKEN FAJITAS

Do you love to eat meat but want to avoid adverse health effects and impact on the environment? Why not try our recipe for MEAT-FREE chicken fajitas! Follow the instructions down below or give our video a watch!

AIMEE’S MEAT FREE CHICKEN FAJITA RECIPE:

Serves 4+

You will need:

1 bag of Quorn Chicken Nuggets
1 onion, finely sliced
3 peppers, sliced

For the marinade:

1 tsp of paprika
1 tsp of coriander
1 tsp of cumin
Pinch of salt
Pinch of pepper

1 medium garlic clove, finely chopped
2 tbsp olive oil

½ lime, juiced

To serve

8 medium tortillas
1 bag of spinach
1 tub of guacamole
1 tub of sour cream

To cook:

1. Once preheated, place the Quorn chicken in the oven and cook for 15 minutes.
2. Chop 3 peppers and one large onion.
3. Crush or finely chop 1 clove of garlic.
4. Add the garlic and 2 tbsp of olive oil and mix.
5. Fry the peppers and the onion on medium heat until brown.
6. Add the seasoning mix and stir continuously.
7. Add the ‘chicken’ and stir until coated.
8. Place a handful of spinach in the middle of a large tortilla.
9. Spoon on the ‘chicken’, peppers and onion.
10. Add guacamole or sour cream if you wish.
11. Fold the tortilla and enjoy!

TIPS TO STAY HEALTHY ON A BUDGET

Credit: Aditya Birla Capital Ltd

As Christmas time looms and office parties and mince pies become part of our routines, our health dips a little.

Despite the impending present costs, keeping healthy – mentally and physically is still important.

Here are some tips for keeping in shape for a little cost.

Twitter to ban all political advertising worldwide

Twitter has announced its plans to stop all political advertising globally. Jack Dorsey the co-founder and CEO of the app went online yesterday evening to state that:

“We believe political message reach should be earned, not bought.”

https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

Twitter’s ban will be enforced on 22 November.

The announcement has caused many to turn to Facebook to seek that Mark Zuckerberg implements the same.

Even Hilary Clinton being amongst those questioning the Facebook founders’ actions.

https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

However earlier this month the Facebook chairman ruled out a ban on political ads.

During a conference call with journalists Zuckerberg said:

“In a democracy, I don’t think it’s right for private companies to censor politicians or the news.”

Whenever you agree with Dorsey or Zuckerberg it will certainly be interesting to see how these implementations will affect the future of politics.

It’s October 31st, Why are We Still in The EU?

 

October 31st was supposed to be the day we exited the EU but with our official departure being delayed until January 31st and a snap general election on the horizon, feeling confused is an understatement.

Here’s a run-through on everything you need to know about our late withdrawal and our impending election:

 

With a general election set for December 12th, you may be wondering who you should vote for. The election intends to be quite Brexit heavy so here are the main parties stances on the matter.

To register to vote follow this link.

Will there be an election soon?

The prime minister has said he will seek a snap general election if the EU decides to delay Brexit until January.

On Tuesday, MPs backed the prime minister’s Withdrawal Agreement Bill but rejected his plans to fast-track the legislation.

That defeat effectively ended any realistic prospect of the UK leaving the EU with a deal by the government’s 31 October deadline.

As a result, Johnson has demanded MPs who voted down his Brexit bill last night now back a general election to break the deadlock.

Will there be an election soon?

Not necessarily.

  1. As even if the PM does decide to press for an early election there is no guarantee he will succeed. There are three ways Johnson can call an election.
  2. Under the Fixed-term Parliaments Act, the prime minister needs to have the backing of two-thirds of MPs to hold a snap poll. This is quite unlikely to pass as Labour would rather wait and see if Brexit can be sorted first.
  3. He could introduce a one-line Bill which could pass as you only need a majority in each vote. But this would allow changes to be added. For example, giving 16 and 17-year-olds the right to vote.

The final way would be for the Conservatives to vote for a no-confidence motion in their own government – it would be hard for Labour to vote that they have confidence in the government. If it passes, the Commons have 14 days for another ‘unity’ government to be formed therefore the PM would be risking his own position in Downing Street.

Boris Johnson will hold a political cabinet at 3PM today where he and his senior ministers are expected to discuss the positives and negatives of holding a snap poll.

Updates to follow.

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