20th April 2021
Showing common humanity through the power of sharing a meal, With Compassion responds to crisis by cooking and distributing food for those who need it most. With Compassion is a Collective Fund operating under Prism the Gift Fund. The organisation joined Prism the Gift Fund at the start of the global pandemic to provide a swift response to feeding those in need during the Covid-19 pandemic.
With Compassion has been providing delicious, healthy meals to thousands of children who are missing vital school meals, alongside providing meals for members of the NHS, key workers, the ill, the vulnerable and the elderly. The Founder, Leon Aarts, has been both a chef and a restaurateur and is also the founder of Calais Kitchens that fed thousands of refugees in the Calais ‘Jungle’ Refugee Camp.
Motivated by the belief that no one should go to bed hungry, Leon Aarts set up With Compassion in March 2020 during the start of Covid-19. It all started with a Facebook post asking for a kitchen for the project and within two weeks Leon and his team had cooked and delivered thousands of meals to the vulnerable. Within one month of operating, Leon and his team had cooked and distributed 60,000 meals across London. The operation was initially run in an industrial kitchen in Islington, it moved to Saracens Rugby Club’s kitchen facilities and then to Wembley Stadium’s kitchen. By 26th June, Compassion London had made 250,000 meals in their first 3 months.
Currently based at the London Scottish House after leaving their temporary home at Alexandra Palace, much of the food is delivered from food waste projects or from businesses that have surplus quality food. With Compassion is dedicated to feeding the vulnerable whilst also preventing food waste and adding to the climate crisis. It is estimated that 8.4 million people in the UK still live in food poverty and groups like With Compassion are key to bridging this gap.
With Compassion collaborated with The Felix Project, a UK-based food redistribution charity that rescues surplus food, and The Evening Standard for their successful Food for London Now campaign which enabled With Compassion to keep operating into the future. With Compassion have since created a partnership with The Felix Project. This transition is testament to Prism’s flexibility as a grant administrator and ability to support charitable organisations as they grow, acting as an incubator.
In times of crisis, when funds need to be distributed quickly, Prism the Gift Fund’s Collective Fund provides individuals and groups the ability to raise and distribute funds swiftly. Collective Funds have a ringfenced charitable account under Prism the Gift Fund’s auspices, benefitting from the charity relief Gift Aid in addition to Prism’s governance and compliance oversight. The structure is designed for charitable projects raising above £25,000 a year for a specific cause area.
The Collective Fund is a time and cost-effective alternative to setting up a standalone charitable entity. It brings value for money to an organisation whilst removing the administrative burden from the fundraiser. The structure is incredibly flexible, and Prism the Gift Fund has a symbiotic relationship with the Collective Fund founders in order to incubate groups or support them indefinitely.
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