Support SEVA Lunch Club at Woodhouse Community Centre

Support SEVA Lunch Club 


Oblong Leeds is a busy thriving community centre in the heart of Woodhouse. Each month we host over a thousand members of the public, in order to bring peace, opportunities, and a sense of belonging to the community.


We feed roundabout 120 stomachs a week in our SEVA Community Cafe. Run by volunteers, SEVA derives from the Hindi word meaning ‘acts of service’. Ironically that’s exactly what it represents. The cafe’s purpose is to gel the community, giving locals from different walks of life the opportunity to interact and dine together comfortably over restaurant quality food.

The generosity of our volunteers is central to what we do. If you visit Oblong, you’ve most likely been welcomed by our volunteer receptionist, gone to a cooking class that’s run by a volunteer group leader, or learned English from a teacher who’s a volunteer.

That’s not all: dozens of people a year come to Headspace, a popular peer mental health support group where participants support each other, and learn skills to take care of their own mental health.

Oblong took over the running of Woodhouse Community Centre in 2011, taking an old Methodist church building, and transitioning it into a thriving centre hub for the local community. Local volunteers run groups and activities, such as Thriving Together, where they run exercise and cooking classes, Mindful Men and Film Club groups, and many more.

SEVA is run by volunteers, and we are able to offer PWYF and free dinners because of their skills and generosity. However, as helpful as our volunteers are, their vital support does not exclude Oblong from our financial reality, such as the provision of ingredients, supplies and keeping the lights running.

Skilled centre chefs succeed in turning ‘intercepted’ food from ‘FareShare’ into delicious three course dinners. This pro sustainability approach is ‘topped up’ with tins of chickpeas and big bags of lentils from a local wholesaler and, during harvest season, herbs from our little kitchen garden.

Due to its innovative nature, SEVA Lunch Club increases in popularity each week. The funding we receive from the Household Support Fund and other places isn’t nearly enough to keep up with SEVA’s demand. Every week the Lunch Club feeds over 100 people. Just imagine roughly how much each dinner costs, especially during the current economic crisis.

It is our intention to accommodate every soul who visits SEVA, which entails having enough utensils, ingredients, beverages, heating and making sure we have enough chairs for people to dine. Due to the vast number of visitors we receive each week, our chairs deteriorate quite frequently. Amongst other expenses, replacing them is becoming a weekly inconvenience, and is chipping away at our resources.

Your donations, no matter the size, will assist us in continuing this wonderful cafe initiative for the foreseeable future, bringing a sense of community and enjoyment back to Woodhouse again.

Thank you for your support!

Donate to SEVA Lunch Club here



Help Oblong create active, flourishing communities

Donations are incredibly important to us. As a charity we rely on grants and contracts to pay for the work we do but we rely on you to help us go beyond that and work with the harder to reach people in new and interesting ways. If you wish to make an online donation or send by post or leave a gift in your will please click on the links and follow the instructions. Together with your donation we can make Woodhouse flourish.

£5 per month 

Pays for a volunteer ESOL teacher to come and teach a free ESOL class to asylum seekers or refugees. 

"The class is always fun, but every week we have an adequate amount of exercises and homework as well. Handouts are given and useful. This is a free English class but high quality!!"

£10 a month 

Pays for one person to have a free lunch every week at SEVA lunch club. Every week our popular volunteer-run lunch club feeds 100 people on a PWYF basis in Little London and Woodhouse. 


£20 per month 

Pays for two Oblong Food Parcels, or a shopping voucher for people who are in urgent need of food, using our acute needs service. Or £20 can pay for childcare to enable asylum seekers with young children to participate in our popular weekly English as a second language class. 

£50 a month 

Helps maintain the computers in our IT suite so that people can apply for work and benefits, and do everything that they need to online. £50 a month also covers volunteer expenses for all of the volunteers that run groups, the lunch club, and who volunteer on reception, at the centre. 

One-off donations of £100 or more 

Helps us maintain the fabric and fixings in our building: currently our front door and our boiler both need attention, but there is always stuff that needs doing in the building!