• StreetSmart and Foodinate – two ways our food and drink community aid those in need

StreetSmart and Foodinate – two ways our food and drink community aid those in need

31 October 2018 by Neil Sowerby

CHRISTMAS is time of giving and once again in the build-up the city’s restaurants are banding together to help both the homeless on the streets and the hungry in deprived communities via, respectively, StreetSmart and Foodinate


National campaign StreetSmart works by participating restaurants adding £1 to all customers’ bills throughout November and December. This is a voluntary contribution and the amount is the same no matter how big the party. The money raised is collected in January and is distributed amongst organisations working to end rough sleeping and homelessness across the city-region. 
StreetSmart is working with the city-region’s Mayor, Andy Burnham, to support his pledge to end the need for rough sleeping in Manchester by 2020.

All the money raised in 2018 will be donated to the Mayor’s Homelessness Fund, which is supporting the new campaign A Bed Every Night, providing accommodation and support to Greater Manchester’s rough sleeping population throughout winter.

Burnham told us: ”StreetSmart expertly marries business innovation with the generosity of the Greater Manchester public. In this city-region we are not the sort of people who walk on by. Whatever our challenges as a country, we are rich enough to put a roof over every head every night of the week. I hope that, in Greater Manchester at least, this will soon become the norm.”

Last year StreetSmart raised over £17,000 in the city to help organisations such as The Booth Centre,  Barnubus and The Wellspring, which are focused on helping individuals break the cycle, regain their dignity and rebuild their lives via positive action, as well as providing crisis and emergency shelter and food.  

Restaurants , who have signed up so far aree Albert’s (Didsbury, Castlefield and Worsley), Bayan (Corn Exchange and Spinningfields), Bundobust, Dukes 92, Eagle & Child Ramsbottom, Grafene, Great British Pizza Co Didsbury, Manhattan, Menagerie, Turtle Bay (Oxford Street and NQ), The Creameries, Randall & Aubin, The Refuge, San Carlo Bottega, Selfridges, Harvey Nichols 2nd Floor, Store Street Exchange. To sign up to StreetSmart contact  Siobhan@siobhanhanley.com


Since 2016, social enterprise Foodinate has brought over 50,000 hot, nourishing meals to people in need in deprived communities in Manchester and across the UK. Amazingly that’s after the 10,000 mark was only reached in January.

Founder Caroline Stevenson says about the remarkable rate of growth: “The problems are becoming impossible to ignore. People can see the hardship in their own towns and cities and want to know what they can do to help.

“We live in the seventh richest country in the entire world, and yet so many people are going without. I wanted to create a link between the two sides of the same coin, enabling local businesses, and local people to help those in need in their own community. It’s about making a sustainable, scalable impact on a huge issue but in a really simple way.’

Originating in Manchester, the organisation is now making an impact in 12 regions across the UK, including London, Birmingham, and Leeds. Each time a customer in a partner restaurant buys a meal marked with a ‘Foodinate’ logo, a hot meal is provided to a person Proove Pizza, one of the scheme’s partners, is expanding its restaurant base in Manchester and Sheffield, meaning Foodinate is growing with its backers and vice versa.

A director there told us: ‘We’re delighted to make such a real and tangible contribution to homeless charities via Foodinate – we have given over 20,000 meals to local people in need in Sheffield and Manchester since the end of last year. To have such a big impact is fantastic, to know we are making a real difference.”

Co-owner of George’s Dining Room and Bar in Worsley Ryan Giggs (pictured above) said: ‘Foodinate has been a success. We really liked the simplicity of the concept from the outset and we are proud to be one of the first restaurants to sign-up to it.”

Since then, he and fellow United legend Gary Neville have signed up their GG Events & Catering operation , ensuring every person attending a private event booked at one of their venues results in a meal through Foodinate.

The Alchemist, Foodinate’s first national chain backer with 13 locations and counting, has increased the scheme’s reach to a national scale. To sign up to Foodinate contact caroline@foodinate.co.uk