Boost for kind volunteer chefs working hard to feed vulnerable people in Portsmouth thanks to Richmond car loan
DOZENS of vulnerable people are being fed each day by a team of selfless volunteers helping to reduce loneliness and bring happiness.
Around 60 people each day are delivered a hot meal by volunteers working out of The Lady Hamilton Pub, led by the pub’s head cook Jeanette Warren.
Jeanette and fellow volunteer Gavin Randall worked hard during the first lockdown, feeding up to 200 people a day until restrictions began to ease.
However, with shielding letters sent out again for the current lockdown, Jeanette and Gavin knew they needed to rally support for people in need once again.
Pompey in the Community is providing ingredients, and Jeanette’s bosses are letting her use the pub kitchen to cook for people over 60 who are shielding or isolating.
Milton resident Jeanette said: ‘I have worked at this pub since I was 15 and I was at college studying. Most of my customers are over the age of 65. When they come here they come for a chat, to be warm, most of them are lonely.
‘When you have worked in this environment so long, you understand that when these restaurants are closed, those people are going to be so lonely.
‘For me, it’s heartwarming and I have a great sense of joy to know people haven’t gone hungry.’
Dedicated helpers have joined the efforts, and the work rate meant the volunteers were using their own cars and fuel to make deliveries all over Portsea Island.
Jeanette contacted Michael Nobes, managing director of Richmond Motor Group, who has loaned the project two brand new electric cars to use for deliveries.
Members of the Richmond team volunteered to plan the routes and deliver the hot meals themselves, so Jeanette’s team has more time to cook and answer calls.
Jeanette said: ‘A whole horde of his team have volunteered. They have been amazing, they have gone above and beyond.
‘It frees us up more time in the afternoon to cook and it’s just a really great whole community coming together.’
Mr Nobes said: ‘This is a great local project that really demonstrates how the people of Portsmouth can pull together to support their local community.’
To get involved or for deliveries if you are shielding, phone (023) 9287 0505 from Monday to Friday between 10am and midday.