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This Sunday (19th September) "Broomfield Bowl" (the disused bowling green in the park) will be the venue for the first ever Palmers Green Food Festival. And who better to take charge of the spoons and ladles, pots and pans and kitchen teams than PG's own Cooking Champion?

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Clare Donovan and Cooking Champions have organised the first ever Palmers Green Food Festival - Sunday 19th September in Broomfield Park

When Clare Donovan started Cooking Champions its mission was fairly modest - giving children cooking lessons and providing around 25 meals every other week to a local homeless charity, The Little Things. This was on top of her work as a teacher and running a professional catering business, Splendour and Sparkle. But then, in March 2020, the pandemic struck and lockdown started, bringing with it an urgent requirement to deliver nutritious food to people sheltering at home and to families with school-age kids.

Watch the recorded interview above to hear how Clare was able to put together a team that managed to cook and deliver 400 meals, all within 24 hours. After moving into the premises of Winchmore Hill Sports Club Clare and her volunteers quickly ramped up production to a thousand meals a week and continued at that rate until the end of August 2020. Currently Cooking Champions is providing 45 families with weekly food drop-offs. In total, they've cooked and delivered more than 40,000 meals.

What comes over strongly in the interview is Clare's seemingly unbounded energy, enthusiasm and vision - she even talks about expanding Cooking Champions London-wide! She's assembled an impressive list of local exhibitors, many of whom have helped Clare and others feed people hungry as a result of austerity, inadequate pay and the pandemic.

It's a serious indictment of Britain that we have come to such a pass - caring, visionary and energetic people like Clare shouldn't just be in the kitchen, but at the top of government too!

Watch a BBC report about Clare's life-changing work during the summer of 2020


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