A fundraising auction has been set up by the Evening Standard and Independent to raise additional funds for the £5.5m already secured by the papers’ dual campaign to help those experiencing food poverty due to the Covid-19 crisis.
As the grand total of donations reached a staggering £5.5m, the Standard announced today that it was sales of a specially designed rainbow heart by Damien Hirst – raising £1.5m for the campaign – which brought the papers past the half way mark for their £10m target.
In a new drive for funds, a video chat with Spurs manager Jose Mourinho and a guitar tutorial with Ellie Goulding are among the prizes to bid for in the Food for London Now Auction.
The dual campaign ‘Food For London Now’ by the Standard and the Indy’s ‘Help the Hungry’ will support the Felix Project, a charity which provides surplus produce to Londoners struggling to afford or access food. The project has established the largest new community kitchen for central London.
Bidders can have the chance to bag four premium tickets to the Euro 2021 semi-finals at Wembley; bid for holiday experiences to be enjoyed post-lockdown including four nights at a five-star resort in Mallorca, three nights in a luxury Manhattan hotel or pampering at the Soho Farmhouse in the UK.
The online silent auction has involved the support of famous names to offer prizes such as learning how to deliver a Shakespearean monologue with Walking Dead star David Morrissey (over Zoom) or personalise a Father’s Day message by comedian Jack Whitehall and his father Michael.
The newsgroup’s project, also supported by actors Olivia Coleman and Phoebe Waller-Bridge, has seen the equivalent of over three million meals provided to Londoners with the appeal fronted by the papers’ proprietor Evgeny Lebedev.
On reaching the £5.5million figure, Evening Standard proprietor Evgeny Lebedev said: “I have long believed in the power of art and this is a wonderful affirmation of that.
“With the support of Damien Hirst we have passed the halfway point in our mission to ensure no Londoner in any corner of the city goes hungry because of covid.”
The auction will close on June 2. More information can be found here.