A convention bureau has launched a campaign to help eradicate food poverty.
VisitBelfast's sustainable tourism focused ‘Changing the Menu. For Good’ project will enlist
venues, caterers and event organisers to directly raise funds for local food
initiative will provide event organisers with four ways to help
fight food poverty in the city by either donating the financial equivalent of a
fourth course, donating a proportion of catering costs incurred during an
event, rounding up delegate or catering fees or donating directly.
which will run as a pilot into next year, is designed to drive more responsible
and sustainable events, to promote social impact and legacy within our local
communities, in addition to the economic benefits tourism already generates.
collaboratively and creatively, Visit Belfast and our partners and stakeholders
have identified targeted ways where the sector can continue to contribute
positively to the city’s social well-being, and help tackle food poverty amid
the cost-of-living crisis,” said Visit Belfast chief executive, Gerry Lennon.
raised will be used for food parcels, hot food and drinks, homeless outreach
and for delivering emergency financial support to cover heating bills or
essential supplies for those in need. It means everyone is playing their part
and we look forward to more partners joining us to ensure its success.”
six-month pilot initiative was launched in partnership with The People’s
Kitchen. Speaking at the launch event, Paul McCusker, founder of the
independently run charity, The People’s Kitchen, which provides support to over
1,000 vulnerable people in Belfast weekly, said: “It’s no longer just the
homeless that are relying on the service, as the cost-of-living crisis hits, we
are seeing increasing numbers of families and people with poor mental health in
He added: “As
an independent charity, we rely heavily on supporter funding, initiatives like
Changing the Menu. For Good, are invaluable and crucial to ensure we can
deliver the immediate support required. The team at Visit Belfast has shown
great support for our organisation - to have an initiative like this in place
will help us look ahead and better forecast how best to support those in need.”
Belfast is targeting a number of business events, gala dinners and conferences
booked in the city, with event organisers already on board including, PHUSE EU
Connect (The Global Healthcare Data Science Community), Business Travel
Association and The Northern Ireland Tourism Alliance.
A desire to travel led Holly Patrick to the business meetings and events world and she’s never looked back. Holly takes a particular interest in event sustainability and creating a diverse and inclusive industry. When she’s not working, she can be found rolling skating along Brighton seafront listening to an eclectic playlist, featuring the likes of Patti Smith, Sean Paul, and Arooj Aftab.