We are delighted to share a blog post from Suzanne James about her fundraising for Westminster House Youth Club.
I have had many sleepless nights in this past few weeks with the pandemic creeping through my business and wiping out event after event.
It has woven itself through my life and through the lives of friends whose loved ones have been stolen, and I can only watch friends grieve from a safe distance.
Like most people, I have done what I can to keep myself sane while putting on a brave face and smile, as always, with a “show must go on’ façade. Without question, we all owe huge thanks to our doctors, nurses and care workers along with other essential service workers who are daily, risking their lives to save our relatives and friends who are dying alone in Covid-19 wards. I am proud to join those standing outside every Thursday as we clap hands to express our thanks.
It troubles me however, to know that some of us here in South East London live fairly luxurious lifestyles at a time when children will go hungry and unnoticed on our doorstep. I have honestly not stopped thinking about one group of people that have been worrying me more than most and those are our teenagers and young adults. Those that are approaching teens or who have actually gotten there. Those that rely on school to have a structure to their day and to have at least one good meal too. Those young people that are in large families and small overcrowded homes who are caged together and unable to observe social distancing.
As schools ‘return’ after the Easter holiday and families return to home schooling, there is inevitably a distinct difference between the haves, and have nots. Some do not even have access to paper and educational supplies that we take for granted and they are relying on Youth Club Manager Kate to distribute.
Young people are used to visiting Westminster House Youth Club in Nunhead as a familiar, safe place to go and spend time with adults who are trained to help, support and guide them. Now they are no longer permitted to leave their home, and life before lockdown is just a distant memory.
Westminster House Youth Club have arranged fuel poverty support for those in need through the Salvation Army. They have secured some basic fruit and vegetables which are being sent to families in dire need and have personal hygiene items going to families who are currently unable to fund these items.
Whilst we wait for restrictions on our ‘normal’ life to be relaxed, I would like to concentrate and focus on what I am good at – feeding people a delicious, healthy, nutritious meal. Meals for those who may be unable to work, shop and cook due to Covid-19 restrictions and for those families who are now forced to self-isolate and have much younger siblings unable to offer stable support or have the knowledge to cook from scratch when our immune systems are in desperate need of a boost.
As many of you know, I have given 100% of the profits from my East Dulwich Supper Club to Westminster House Youth Club to fund our partnered programme Cooking From Scratch and Bridging The Gap. This offers monthly cookery classes to young people and then these young people invite the elder generation in the community to the club for Afternoon Tea where the young people bake, serve and dine alongside them.
Now, is your opportunity to join me as I am crowdfunding to raise money to provide cooked meals for the young people, their families and those in desperate need in the local community. SE15 is a postcode which is divided; on one side gentrification and on the other extreme poverty. Now it really is your turn… Your turn to read my why… Your turn to be my who… Your turn to realise lend your support.
With weeks ahead without any hope of work, and in a time of prolonged uncertainty, your donation will make such a huge and important difference. I will put my money where my mouth is and have started the fund with £100.00
A donation of £10 will pay for 3 home cooked, healthy nutritious meals.
- 60 meals a week over 10 weeks will cost £2,000
- 120 meals a week over 10 weeks will cost £4,000
- 180 meals a week over 10 weeks will cost £6,000
- 240 meals a week over 10 weeks will cost £8,000
- 300 meals a week over 10 weeks will cost £10,000
As a final thought…. Eating a well-balanced nutritious diet is important for supporting the immune system; the nutrients then influence the body’s ability to fight infection. The World Health Organisation suggests that, while no one food will cure the Covid-19 pandemic, a healthy diet helps strengthen our immune systems ability to cope with infections.
To make your donation please go to:
With thanks, Suzanne