by James Beckles
The COVID- 19 pandemic have both exposed and exacerbated the of level food poverty in the UK, particularly in economically
deprived areas of London. This is reflected in the number of food banks and hot meal services in communities most
affected by this social challenge.
In the UK, several community organisations, charities and local councils have stepped in to help. One such charity is Impact
Cuisine started by Jeffrey Simon, Uptown Cuisine located at Park Lane ,Tottenham, N17, just 10 minutes’ walk from Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. Its concept is threefold. It provides hot meals three times a week to people in their homes; people in the community can collect
hot meals (cooked on site) and also pick up groceries from ‘the market’ set up outside the restaurant.
The opportunity to start the project came in June 2020 when another organisation Mr Simon volunteered for folded. Mr Simon, proprietor of Uptown Cuisine, outlined his motivation behind this initiative :
“The organisation I volunteered for was supplying 400 meals a day and other volunteers taking them out(to people’s home). It stopped prematurely and the demand was still there.
I decided to take up the mantle. It was the pandemic; I couldn’t leave people without a meal people in the previous organisation was very supportive in helping to set it up. We sought out the most vulnerable residents from the database and people from the local community.
Since we started ,we have served over 18,000 meals . “ It has grown from strength to strength and people appreciate it”
On food poverty, Mr Simon states: “ It was shocking to see. You are talking about London. the United Kingdom. What we see taking place every day
are things we normally associate with ‘third world countries. It’s an eye opener to know that because of this pandemic, it has opened up a pandora’s box where you could see that there are people out there
living ‘hand to mouth’. Even working people on low incomes require the services. The pandemic has also created a positive unity between communities.
I have seen a difference in the Northumberland
Park community in the last 10 months.”
To support or donate to Impact Cuisine :
Visit Uptown Cuisine, 161 Park Lane,
Tottenham, N17 0HJ
Tel : 020 801 1169 Mob:07904 651 803