Great Initiatives Helping You Help Restaurants

There is much to admire about the way humans are able to adapt in times of overwhelming uncertainty. Never more so than those who walk the path of hospitality.

If there’s one thing we know about the foodie community, they sure as hell don’t take things sitting down. Right now, we are reminded of the strength, creativity and relentless nature of those who dedicate their lives to this line of work. When COVID-19 takes a swing, they hit right back with contactless doorstep deliveries and innovative takeaway schemes, amongst a million other power plays.

However, to help these local establishments thrive in a new and unfamiliar environment, there’s one thing they need more than ever. You – the diners. This is where many non-profit initiatives have sprung up, developing online platforms and services that make it easier than ever to back your local restaurants.

If you are in a position to do so, we urge you to pledge your support by scheduling in time across the week to give back to the small businesses that have always been there to put food on your table. This act of support could be realised through donations, purchasing a gift card, posting an encouraging comment on a restaurant’s latest Instagram photo, ordering lunch deliveries to replace what would otherwise be a very sad home office sandwich…

By no means are we finished with this list. We will continue to add to it for as long as necessary.

If you know of any other fantastic initiatives that should be featured here, leave us a note in the comments below.

Here’s How You Can Help Restaurants From Home…

Please Don’t Close

To combat the threat of small and local establishments shutting their doors, a passionate group of individuals (many from Berlin’s BCGDV and TIER Mobility) have stepped in. Please Don’t Close is a platform to support much-loved businesses through the crisis. From Milan to London, the website offers an evolving directory where visitors can discover businesses across all sectors that need support. The list in London is slowly growing, but there’s a neat function that lets users submit hospitality or retail businesses they know need help – so go wild and add those you know of in your local neighbourhood!

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We Are Still Open

Tom van Oorschot and Wendy Lyn – hats off to you! This pair of legends (from The Netherlands and Paris respectively) have joined forces to create a nifty interactive map that connects diners to restaurants open for takeaway and delivery during COVID-19. Anyone is able to participate in this non-profit initiative. Simply add a local hospitality business that is open and in need of support from hungry diners. Oh, and if you don’t see your city on the list, just write a little note to Tom and Wendy to let them know!

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Help Feed NHS Crowdfunding Campaign

Many incredible projects have emerged to support hospitality owners. However, we’re amazed at those within the industry who are using the resources they have to feed community members who need it most. Henry and John’s healthy fast food chain, LEON, is one example of this.

Well-known celebrities Damian Lewis, Helen McCrory and Matt Lucas have engaged LEON in a crowdfunding campaign to feed London’s National Health Service (NHS). The mission is to raise 1 million pounds. With this money, hot meals will be delivered to NHS staff, some of whom are currently working 20 hour shifts. LEON is part of the first stage: to deliver 6,000 meals a day to London’s worst affected hospitals. Then, it’s hoped the campaign will spread nationwide.

Some of London’s other industry heroes are also involved in this not-for-profit movement! These champs include Wasabi, Tortilla, Peach Pubs, Rosa Thai, Hop, Pizza Pilgrims, Franco Manca, Farmer J, Tossed, Haché, Abokado, Dishoom and Nusa Kitchen. Cue the applause!

The crowdfunding campaign is over 50% of the way to its target. If you are able to donate, click the banner below.

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Hospitality Action

Since way back in 1837, Hospitality Action has been supporting industry members through a range of problems. Fast forward to March 2020 and there couldn’t be a greater need for organisations that help ensure restaurants, cafes and bars have the resources they need to bounce back.

To combat the COVID-19 crisis within the restaurant sector, Hospitality Action has coordinated an emergency appeal, asking the community to give what they can in order to financially aid establishments heavily affected by job losses, reduced hours and pay – and in some cases, closures.

Want to help in some way big or small? Hospitality Action is currently taking donations of any value through their website via the button below.

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Empirical Spirits Cocktail Delivery

The Copenhagen-based distillery has teamed up with bartenders from all over the world to deliver cocktails direct to thirsty doorsteps. As part of the campaign, Mr Lyan (a.k.a. Ryan Chetiyawardana) from London’s Lyaness and Cub has concocted a Martini-inspired cocktail: ES x Lyaness. As well as keeping things fun at home, a percentage of all sales will be donated to Hospitality Action.

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London Restaurant Cooperative

Stephen Tozer, owner of Le Bab, has launched a new enterprise: London Restaurant Co-operative. The new initiative was started to give work back to recently unemployed hospitality staff. Tozer opened up a kitchen to provide chefs and waitstaff with a space to prepare ready-to-eat meals. For just £6.5, you can order a beautiful restaurant-quality meal direct to your doorstep, with the option to top it up with house wine or beer. Opt to donate an additional £4 and you’ll also feed a NHS staff member. All profits go back to the workers preparing the meals.

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Donate a Dinner

The team from Jimmy Garcia Catering has partnered with Age UK Wandsworth to feed elderly people throughout this difficult time. For each  £3 donated through their crowdfunding campaign, Jimmy Garcia will deliver a wholesome and delicious meal to these particularly vulnerable people in the local community.

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Local Small Businesses

Local Small Businesses is another online directory, inspired by Carlos and Maria from Crudo Cevicheria. The platform guides diners towards London restaurants who need support. Order takeaway and pick-up or buy a voucher to use in the future. There’s even a neat option to add a message of support. Any business is able to sign up to be listed with this non-profit project and join other establishments like Crudo, Al Dente and Açaí Sisters.

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Yard Sale Pizza #FeedNHS Campaign

Hip takeaway pizza joint, Yard Sale Pizza, has whipped up a seriously feel-good campaign to feed those on the frontline. For those looking to make an act of kindness, the eatery is taking online donations so they can feed the NHS with handmade stone baked pizza. A $10 donation will feed 7 NHS staff members, $20 will feed 14 and a generous $50 will feed 36.

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We Are Tip Jar

We Are Tip Jar is currently working with Hospitality Action to provide a digital platform where the community can contribute an online tip to support laid-off staff in their city or town. The non-profit also offers other resources like information around applying for grants and fundraising packs for those wishing to help spread awareness of the campaign.

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Virtual Pint is a crowdfunding campaign set up to help independent bars, pubs, arts spaces and entertainment venues make it through COVID-19. Already over 70% of the way to their £5,000 target, People are encouraged to donate anything from the price of a cream soda (£2) to Dom Perignon (£200). Those who make a donation of over £20 will also go in the draw to win festival tickets, bar tabs and more!

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The Crosstown Collective

Crosstown Doughnuts has a whole heap of initiatives going on to keep you well fed and to help others in the community who need it. Partnering with Millers Bespoke Bakery, The Estate Dairy and their regular fruit and veg suppliers, Crosstown is delivering essential food boxes to homes all over London. Order the original or vegan box, crammed with bread, fresh fruit and veg, milk (dairy or non-dairy), eggs, butter and more.

On top of this, Crosstown is also collecting online donations to be able to treat the NHS to beautiful vegan doughnuts. Donate 12 or 120 doughnuts or a box of groceries.

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More to be added soon…