Pakistani Serves Free 500 Meals A Day To The Needy In Hounslow
An Asian community kitchen in Hounslow is serving more than 500 hot meals to low-paid families, the homeless, and refugees free of cost every day.
The ‘Open Kitchen’ project in West London is launched by a Pakistani community activist and businessman Ehsan Shahid, who started it about three years ago with the support of a charity.
Till the Coronavirus pandemic, the Open Kitchen served as a restaurant for needy people to come and relax and talk over a free meal, twice a day, seven days a week. Nobody asked any questions about it ever and anyone who wanted food could simply walk in, take a plate and cutlery and select their meal according to their taste from a buffet comprised of fresh meat, fish, vegetarian options, fruit, pudding, and various condiments.
As the initial lockdown hit the world in March 2020, the demand for free food has increased and at present, there is not a single day when the kitchen doesn’t serve over 500 hot and nutritious meals.
Shahid closed the dine-in option per the government's SOPs on the coronavirus but turned his project into a collection service. Now, he provides two hot meals along with water and snacks daily.
The Open Kitchen has not closed even for a single day, as the credit goes to its team of volunteers and staff, according to Ehsan Shahid.