I’ve found it remarkable that in the face of adversity, so many individuals and businesses – both big and small – have responded with so much generosity during this pandemic. It just goes to show that sometimes, not all change is bad and there have been instances in all our lives where from bad times we seem to emerge as better versions of ourselves.
In this case, it’s fair to say that it has forced many of us to think about giving back and the impact our fast-paced lives had on the environment and nature around us. And on a human level, we seem more empathetic and caring towards our neighbours and community. In London, a friendly smile, hello, or good morning to a stranger is no longer a weird thing to do. Normally unthinkable – something, as a Northerner, I have always found difficult to come to terms with! – it is now the norm.
So, in honour of all the good humans out there, we’ve picked out a few of our favourite initiatives and good news amidst the doom and gloom reporting that has dominated the headlines. And if you have any of your own good stories to share from your community, please share with us – we want to know all about it!
Feed the Frontline
Feed the Frontline is a new charity working in partnership with wholesale food suppliers, giving thousands of bags of seasonal fruit and vegetables to hospitals each week. Once delivered, they are distributed to frontline staff by NHS volunteers. Anna Prior, who is part of the team launching the initiative, says “Food is at the heart of this nation and helping sustain those heroic healthcare workers that are risking their lives for us is a small way of us giving back and showing our appreciation”.
By giving the nutritious food parcels directly to hospitals, this helps maintain social distancing, allows the collection of fresh parcels at the end of shifts and saves the time of going to supermarkets. This effort is also helping save the jobs of wholesale suppliers as many have lost most of their trade from restaurants and events. So far in April they have received donations that have enabled them to deliver 23,000 food parcels to 7 different hospitals across the UK. They have a further target raise of £250,000 so that we can keep deliveries going throughout May and hopefully beyond. 100% of any donation goes to supporting frontline key workers because there is no administrative leakage, the team behind the charity are all voluntary.
How you can help: Any social and general media endorsement will allow us to achieve more donations, reach a larger number of hospitals and gain more awareness to be able to continue. We would also appreciate any social media posts of support from any channels (Instagram, Twitter and Facebook) referencing our handles, with a donate now plea.
Jamb Launch Charity Auction
Charlotte and Will Fisher, owners of Jamb, have selected 10 reproduction mantels to sell via ebay auction for the Shelter Charity. The proceeds will benefit the charity’s emergency appeal to help people facing housing issues and homelessness because of coronavirus. Amongst the chimneypieces in the charity auction are a fine Portland stone Georgian chimneypiece, a pure Siena marble bolection
Noxy Brothers coffee
After discovering that many large coffee chains in hospitals had totally closed leaving doctors and nurses with no caffeine fuel, the two best friends, who run the Noxy Brothers in Burlington Arcade, set up a coffee bar in NHS Northwick Park and are sponsoring it for up to 4 weeks. They are providing free
N.Peal, an authentically British and luxury cashmere knitwear and accessories retailer, has donated 30% of their online sales from Easter long weekend to the NHS staff. The contribution of £10,751 will go towards NHS workers.
ROSEWOOD HOTEL GROUP LAUNCHES ROSEWOOD RAISE, A RELIEF INITIATIVE TO SUPPORT ASSOCIATES AND COMMUNITIES AFFECTED BY COVID-19
Rosewood Hotel Group today announces the launch of Rosewood Raise, a comprehensive relief initiative developed in support of the Group’s associates who have been impacted by the COVID-19, as well as the communities in which the Group operates. Rooted on the foundation of Relationship Hospitality, a belief that true hospitality springs from the nurturing and building of strong and lasting relationships with associates, guests, partners and communities, Rosewood Hotel Group has always recognized and revered the power of people in creating the exceptional experiences that drive the industry. Developed in dedication to these very individuals that have demonstrated an unwavering commitment to the Group’s hotels and destinations, Rosewood Raise supports an associate relief fund and community-focused efforts, including donated hotel rooms and meal preparation and supplies for essential workers.
In London, Michael Bonsor, managing director of Rosewood London, Warren James, co-founder of hospitality headhunter James & Cranwell and Thomas Kochs, managing director of the Corinthia Hotel in London have launched the Hospitality 4 Heroes Challenge with the aim of raising £10,000 to support the NHS Charities Together Covid-19 Appeal
Donations Boost Women’s Support Organisations
De Beers Group has donated $200,000 across its four producer partner countries of Botswana, Canada, Namibia and South Africa to assist women’s shelters and support organisations to respond to an increase in gender-based violence resulting from the pandemic. This is in addition to the $5million already pledged by the brand to support response efforts. These new funds will support the capacity of women’s shelters and organisations in host communities to meet the increase in immediate needs, as well as beyond lockdown periods. Anne Shongwe, UN Women Representative, South Africa Multi-Country Office, said: “As economic and social pressures and fear have grown over recent weeks, we have seen a significant and deeply concerning surge in domestic violence throughout the world, what UN Women has termed the ‘Shadow Pandemic’, that is already being felt in Southern Africa with calls of distress from women more than doubling. Current restrictions on movement – locking women in with their violent intimate partners – is exacerbating the situation, so we must ensure women can continue to access essential support services safely as we work to beat COVID-19.”
Globally, Diageo has pledged to create eight million bottles of hand sanitiser. In the UK, 500,000 litres of GNS will be made available for national healthcare systems and workers across the UK and Ireland
And we mustn’t forget, Captain Tom!
Captain Tom Moore turned 100 last week, having raised more than £30 million for the NHS with his 100 laps walk around his garden. His initial fundraising target was £1000. Captain Tom has been made an honorary colonel in recognition of his efforts. The war veteran has received an estimated 140,000 birthday cards, including one from the queen, to mark the occasion. The cards are being opened by volunteers and are on display at Bedford School, where his grandson, Benjie Ingram-Moore, is a pupil. Other birthday celebrations for the new national icon included a military flypast with three loops of Captain Tom’s home, and a train named in his honour by Great Western Trains, which made its first journey today.
Happy Belated Birthday, Captain Tom!