“First impressions last.” – Josh Mills

In these tough times, students are balancing difficult deadlines, studying and financial issues due to the cost-of-living crisis. The university has offered free breakfasts and lunches to support students and help alleviate food costs, and Coleraine Christian Union President Josh Mills wanted to help even more.

Josh Mills, CU President

During Week 4 of Semester 2, the “CU” held their Events Week – a range of different themed nights to promote the CU and reach out to the students at Ulster University. From Monday to Thursday, they held a Lunch Bar, which consisted of free lunch, snacks and a guest speaker bringing a Biblical message. When asked about these lunch bars, Josh said, “We’re all aware of how tight money is these days, so I proposed the idea of free lunch. That way, we could spread the message of God as well as help out students who may struggle to feed themselves due to rising costs.”

A busy crowd at one of eight lunch bars. Lunch bars took place from 12-1 and 1-2 from Monday-Thursday.

The choice of food ranged from wraps and sandwiches to hot dogs and soup. Josh wanted to make sure each student was looked after and also treated like “an old friend”. He said, “It’s much more than a free lunch – it’s a connection with someone we may never see again. This first impression will stick with them so I wanted to show these students who may have never stepped foot into a church or chapel the love and friendship that God shows us.”

When asked how he felt the lunch bars went, he said, “Lots of students we have never seen at CU before made use of the lunch bars. They may not come to a meeting or they may have only been interested in free food but either way, we were able to provide this for them and hopefully we helped feed people who otherwise would’ve went without.”

If you are struggling financially and require extra assistance, visit the Ulster University website, and see what support is available for you.