Clair Challenor-Chadwick, MD of Cause UK writes in the Big Issue
Celebrity chefs endorse biscuits that will help support homeless veterans
In late 2011 I met a charity eager to raise funds for facilities for homeless veterans. I’d recently set up Cause UK with my sister, Ann. It had made a name for delivering high-impact campaigns, and we took on the challenge.Research showed veterans favoured physical work like gardening and catering; baking was already a proven therapeutic model, building confidence and camaraderie.We launched a campaign. By February 2012, with support from the Leeds Community Foundation and Marco Pierre White, we’d secured £55,000 for the launch of the Veterans’ Artisan Bakery. Celebrity chef Rosemary Shrager (pictured) agreed to front the grand opening. She was so taken by the charity she became a patron, raising money with her TV appearances.
But we wanted income that wasn’t reliant on charity to secure the bakery’s future. Now, after a year of visiting biscuit factories, research, branding and tasting, our biscuits are ready for shops.
Sean Scott, 28, found himself on the streets with an alcohol problem after post-traumatic stress disorder wrecked his mental health, family life and army career. He told me he wouldn’t be here without the charity’s support. “Civilians go to bed at night knowing soldiers are keeping them safe,” he said. “It’s nice to give back.”
We hope people will Dunk and Donate in support of veterans like Scott. It’s been a labour of love and I can’t think of a sweeter way to support the vital rehabilitation work than turning fire power into flour power.
To support the charity or to place a biscuit order: veteransbakery.com
Clair Challenor Chadwick, managing director, Cause UK