Initiatives kick-started by the Evening Standard’s Food for London Now and The Independent’s Help the Hungry have collectively raised more than £1million to help feed London throughout the coronavirus pandemic.
However, the Independent and Evening Standard owner Evgeny Lebedev hopes another £1million can be raised for the project. Lebedev said: “Let’s finish the job and keep vulnerable Londoners healthy and fed.”
The joint appeals reached the million-pound figure just twelve days after their launch. The money will be put toward The Felix Project which funds the food supplies for children, those in poverty, the NHS and vulnerable Londoners.
Support was given by a range of companies, foundations, philanthropists and readers – including a £50,000 donation from Citi bank and £25,000 from the founders of Lush cosmetics, Mark and Mo Constantine.
Lebedev said: “Twelve days ago I wrote to ask for your help in the face of the greatest challenge of our collective lifetime — and you responded magnificently. The £1 million you have donated will help us help The Felix Project feed NHS workers, care workers, the poor and the vulnerable. Thank you London.
“But I have to report that I have been out delivering food with Felix today and they are seeing unprecedented demand from people who cannot afford or access food.
“I went to two homeless charities, The Marylebone Project and Rhythms of Life, where our deliveries are preventing deep distress. I accompanied one of 22 Felix vans that set off across the capital, filled to the brim, to ferry over 20 tonnes of nutritious food to three of the giant community hubs established in Barnet, Islington and Haringey, and to more than 75 charities and schools. That’s more than double the 10 tonnes a day Felix were supplying in normal times.
“Within days, this picture is set to change dramatically yet again. Felix say they expect another 11 community hubs in another 11 boroughs to open their doors to hungry Londoners — and with it Felix’s output will need to double again.
“That is why we at The Independent and Evening Standard and are committing our resources to raise another million pounds to prevent food insecurity to people already anxious about their health and that of loved ones. That is why we say: £1 million raised, £1 million to go. Let’s finish the job and keep vulnerable Londoners healthy and fed.”
Donations can be made at virginmoneygiving.com/fund/FoodforLondonNOW