Industry event raises more than £20k for homeless charity

By Michelle Perrett

- Last updated on GMT

Fundraising event: Cook and Dine raises money for Only A Pavement Away
Fundraising event: Cook and Dine raises money for Only A Pavement Away

Related tags: Charity, Public house

More than £21,000 has been raised by the hospitality sector to support the industry charity Only A Pavement Away (OAPA).

The charity, which helps homeless people into hospitality jobs, saw the money raised at its annual Cook and Dine event. 

OAPA founder and ceo Greg Mangham recently revealed that the charity has already helped 138 people facing homelessness​ into jobs in the hospitality industry.

The event, held in central London, saw close to 300 people, including UKHospitality CEO Kate Nicholls, British Beer & Pub Association CEO Emma McClarkin and BII CEO Steve Alton, gather to enjoy a three course lunch prepared by chef Tom Aikens at the Grade 2-listed Freemasons Hall in Covent Garden, in London's West End.  

Strengthen team

The amount raised, which is still rising, was the combination of table ticket sales, a charity auction and also a raffle with companies from across the industry donating prizes and auction lots. 

“We are delighted to have raised such a fantastic amount, all of which will go to help us strengthen our team ensuring we can connect with more employers, charities and candidates in finding work and stability through a career in hospitality,” said Mangham.  

“There are so many people to thank for their generosity – from the Freemasons organisation that let us have the venue for absolutely zero cost, the Strand Palace Hotel for providing their kitchen as a holding kitchen, to all of our amazing sponsors including Asahi, Caterer.com and The Pepper Collective through to Tom who prepared such a fabulous meal and the army of people that served and waited tables.  The success of Cook and Dine just underscores what a brilliant, inclusive, caring and supportive industry we are all a part of.”

Event hghlights

Highlights from the event included an auction lot which will see the winning bidder join UKHospitality chief executive Kate Nicholls for the day to visit the Houses of Parliament and enjoy lunch with an MP, plus a food study tour in Scotland with Mapal Group’s CMO James Hacon plus a 10-person dinner prepared and cooked by top chef Ben Purton.

OAPA currently works alongside 87 hospitality employers and 85 charity partners, and hospitality businesses to offer employment to those facing homelessness, prison leavers and veterans. 

Mangham added: ​“By 2026, it is estimated that there will be another 1.3m vacancies in the hospitality industry. At the same time the number of rough sleepers is on the increase. By joining forces with us you can help someone get their life back on track and help fill the industry with hard-working, committed staff.”

Related topics: Events & Occasions

Related news