A SOUTHAMPTON man has vowed to raise £50,000 to help feed thousands of struggling Hampshire families.
Southampton born Dowayne Neufville has launched the ‘Festive 50k, Donate a plate’ campaign is aiming to raise £50,000 with donations from local people who want to give money so that people less fortunate than themselves can enjoy a Christmas meal this year.
The scheme will also go towards our county’s NHS workers, care workers and elderly people, who are spending this Christmas alone.
The team are urging people to donate just £5 to the scheme to help feed the county’s heroes and the most vulnerable.
The campaign has been backed by a number of local businesses, who will be cooking the meals.
The dinners will be distributed by a team of volunteers across Southampton, Eastleigh, Waterside, New Forest, Winchester and Romsey.
Dowayne said: ““By raising this amount of money we will be able to support up to 50 local independent restaurants to make 10,000 Christmas meals for people who otherwise won’t be able to enjoy a Christmas lunch.
“Our aim is also to make sure no family goes without a meal and to support local restaurants at the same time.
“These are strange and difficult times that many people find themselves in. People that were in well paid jobs, have been made jobless.
“Relationships have been broken due to being confined to the same household.
“On top of this you have people who have been in long term self-isolation who are high-risk for Covid-19.
“These are some of the people that don’t make the headlines.
“We would welcome the community coming together at this festive time of the year just to give them a little pick me up.
“We have a large team of volunteers who will collect the meals from restaurants and deliver them all over the SO postcode on Christmas Eve.”
A number of local schools are also taking part in the scheme by making Christmas cards that will go with the dinners.
The restaurants taking part so far include the Gusto Lounge in Shirley, Browns Town Jamdown Jerk Co in Bevois, the Saints Pub in Millbrook, Sabro Catering, The Crafty Bug Cafè in Itchen, The Four Horseshoes in Nursling, The Salmon Leap Pub in Totton, The Fountain, The Lord Nelson in Hythe, The Lovely Little Cafe in Dibden Purlieu, and the Falcon Inn in Fawley.
The Four Horseshoes in Nursling was one of the first restaurants to sign up to ‘Festive 50k Donate a Plate’.
General Manage Lewis Rosario said: “It’s a brilliant thoughtful idea that Dowayne has come up with.
“As well as offering people a Christmas lunch if they aren’t having one, it’s a great way to support local restaurants like ours who have really suffered due to the lockdown.
“We are completely behind this campaign and I know our customers would help where they can.”
More information and to make donations www.upthehighstreet.uk/festive-50k.