Baldock street food business set to feed the homeless this Christmas

PUBLISHED: 18:01 24 October 2018

CCs street food and catering owner Shane Cole, pictured with eight-month-old son Carter, is appealing for donations for the initiative Feed Up Warm Up. Picture: NICK JOHNS

CCs street food and catering owner Shane Cole, pictured with eight-month-old son Carter, is appealing for donations for the initiative Feed Up Warm Up. Picture: NICK JOHNS

©2018 Archant

A Letchworth businessman is preparing to launch a Hitchin soup kitchen for the homeless in December, and has been left amazed by the level of support from the community.

Owner of CC’s street food and catering Shane Cole is appealing for donations for the initiative Feed Up Warm Up. Picture: NICK JOHNSOwner of CC’s street food and catering Shane Cole is appealing for donations for the initiative Feed Up Warm Up. Picture: NICK JOHNS

Shane Cole – owner of Baldock-based CC’s street food and catering – plans to provide warm food to the homeless in Hitchin throughout December from his street food trailer and has already started to compile Christmas boxes containing essentials.

The initiative, Feed Up Warm Up, will take place in the town every Thursday in December and will include hot food, food parcels, warm clothes, a haircut, sanitary items, and counselling.

All items and services have been donated to CC’s from various businesses in and around North Herts.

Shane told the Comet: “When I was 17 and fresh out of foster care I was homeless through November, December and January and I was living on the streets.

Shane Cole and chef Michael Elias are working to feed the homeless over the winter. Picture: Courtesy of Shane ColeShane Cole and chef Michael Elias are working to feed the homeless over the winter. Picture: Courtesy of Shane Cole

“I have never been in a position to start my own soup kitchen until now. I’ve got 15 businesses on board to sponsor us and other food outlets donating – even a chicken shop in Luton.

“We’ve also launched a Christmas box appeal, asking for the essentials – gloves, socks, hats, toothpaste – which will be distributed in December to people on the streets.

“We also want to come to Stevenage and do the same – we’re looking for Stevenage businesses in the coming weeks. If we can get the backing, we will come to both Hitchin and Stevenage all through December. 
“I know we can’t help everybody – but even if we can help just 10 people it will be worth it.”

Off the back of the success and interest already shown in the scheme, the 31-year-old from Letchworth says he hopes to turn Feed Up Warm Up into a registered charity and continue to help those living on the streets all year round. He has chosen Hitchin, and potentially Stevenage, to start as he says homelessness is most visible in these towns.

CC's street food are preparing to open a soup kitchen in December in Hitchin and Stevenage. Picture: Shane ColeCC's street food are preparing to open a soup kitchen in December in Hitchin and Stevenage. Picture: Shane Cole

As well as serving food, the kitchen will see counsellors, mental health specialists and a team from alcoholics anonymous come along to speak to those in need.

Shane asks anyone who’s interested in donating a Christmas box to have them ready for collection on December 1. You can contact him via the CC’s street food Facebook page and also donate to running costs of Feed Up Warm Up via gofundme.com/xmas-homeless-feed-up.

Since advertising the scheme, Shane has been inundated with messages from members of the public and businesses wishing to get involved, and has set up a meeting with Stevenage Haven to discuss how he can launch a similar scheme in the town.

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