Earlier this week saw the launch of #CookForUkraine, led by a number of top food industry figures, including Olia Hercules, Alissa Timoshkina and influencer Clerkenwell Boy, who teamed up with Unicef to launch the fundraising scheme.
So far over 60 restaurants have signed up, including the Big Mamma Group, Blacklock, Kol, Soho House, St. John, Ottolenghi, Homeslice, Petersham Nurseries, Sabor and Fallow. Others include new hotspot Sessions Arts Club, popular neighbourhood east London chain Yard Sale Pizza, Leyton-based food delivery service Dabba Drop and Homerton’s vegan faves Club Mexicana. More than £55,000 (and rapidly climbing) has been raised in just a few days.
While some will be donating a portion of their guests’ bills to the charity, others are adding a Ukrainian dish or cocktail to their menus, with all proceeds going to Unicef. Home cooks across the country can also join the movement by cooking a Ukrainian dish at home and sharing pictures and recipes through social media, using the hashtag #CookForUkraine. Learn more about this project, and how to get involved whether you’re a restaurant or diner, here.
And launching today is #DrinkersForUkraine, a similar initiative, which sees craft breweries, cider makers, wineries, and drinkers across Europe coming together for a series of events throughout March, to raise funds and show solidarity for friends and peers in Ukraine.
As well as inviting people to join a charity online auction of rare and sought-after items, Drinkers For Ukraine is also calling upon breweries to brew Resist, a ‘Ukrainian Anti-Imperial Stout’ developed by displaced Ukrainian brewers, with profits donated to the Red Cross.
“The messages of support we’ve already received from our international friends have meant so much,” says Lana Svitankova, writer, translator, educator and Ukraine’s first ever certified official guide, who is leading the project.
“With Drinkers for Ukraine, we want to channel this solidarity into real, practical help for the people dealing with the devastating consequences of this tragic and illegal war. It will start with charity auctions and a collaborative brew, but we have more plans in the works, for even more people to show their support and get involved. It isn’t hyperbole to say this is a matter of life and death for millions of people, who urgently need our help now – in whatever way we can provide it. ”
Breweries, cider makers, wineries, and anyone else wishing to participate or learn more about the project should head here.