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gordon ramsay, tina clarke, lunch workers

Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay.

Celebrity Chef Gordon Ramsay is notorious for having a bit of a temper on his shows “Hell's Kitchen” and “MasterChef.” But that doesn’t mean he can’t have a big heart, too.

Ramsay was being interviewed on the BBC's "The Radio 2 Breakfast Show" last week when kitchen manager Tina Clarke from Edward Peake Middle School in Biggleswade, Bedfordshire, England jokingly called in to ask for help. She said she was "cooking on her own here" because two of her co-workers were out sick.

She had to prepare 300 meals for the students while short-staffed.

"I'm cooking here on my own, I work in a school kitchen and my chef has gone off sick and I have another one off with COVID, and I just wondered if Gordon would help me today and give me a hand?” Clarke asked jokingly.


To her surprise, Ramsay agreed to help. "If I did have the time I would be in Bedfordshire, I promise you in a heartbeat, I can send a chef if you wish?" he asked.

How could Clarke refuse the help of a chef that works with Gordon Ramsay?

Ramsay called a cab and sent over a member of his team, chef Rob Roy Cameron from Ramsay's Lucky Cat restaurant in London, to help. Lucky Cat is in a wealthy neighborhood and is known for Asian-inspired small plates and sushi.

Clarke had no idea that Ramsay would send help so she was a little worried the school administration wouldn’t be too pleased with her inviting a stranger into the kitchen without permission. But she couldn’t have known that Ramsay would say yes to her half-hearted plea.

"When I got a message saying your chef will be with you in an hour, I thought, 'Oh my God, I'm going to have to fess up to the head and I hope she doesn't give me detention or lines,'" she admitted.

However, the headteacher, Miss Linington, said it was fine with her and a jolt of excitement went through the halls of the school. When Cameron arrived, Clarke put him to work immediately making cauliflower cheese. "I'm sure he was terrified by having three menopausal women around him in the kitchen all day," Clarke joked.

Clarke said that the food tasted “amazing” even though Cameron was shocked to learn he couldn’t use any salt. The students were happy about their visitor, too. "The kids were so excited,” Clarke said. "We've never had so many visitors [in the kitchen],” Clarke said.

The next day, Clarke got the chance to personally thank Ramsay on the radio. "It sent a huge buzz around the school. So, thank you," she said through a pretaped message. She also thanked “her loyal staff," Andrea, Mandy, Sharon and Louise.

"Anytime, Tina," Ramsay responded.

Ramsay’s generosity shows that when you have a true love of food and cooking, a kitchen is a kitchen, whether you’re preparing a meal at a 5-star Michelin-rated restaurant or you have hundreds of hungry students to feed.

All images provided by Bombas

We can all be part of the giving movement

True

We all know that small acts of kindness can turn into something big, but does that apply to something as small as a pair of socks?

Yes, it turns out. More than you might think.

A fresh pair of socks is a simple comfort easily taken for granted for most, but for individuals experiencing homelessness—they are a rare commodity. Currently, more than 500,000 people in the U.S. are experiencing homelessness on any given night. Being unstably housed—whether that’s couch surfing, living on the streets, or somewhere in between—often means rarely taking your shoes off, walking for most if not all of the day, and having little access to laundry facilities. And since shelters are not able to provide pre-worn socks due to hygienic reasons, that very basic need is still not met, even if some help is provided. That’s why socks are the #1 most requested clothing item in shelters.

homelessness, bombasSocks are a simple comfort not everyone has access to

When the founders of Bombas, Dave Heath and Randy Goldberg, discovered this problem, they decided to be part of the solution. Using a One Purchased = One Donated business model, Bombas helps provide not only durable, high-quality socks, but also t-shirts and underwear (the top three most requested clothing items in shelters) to those in need nationwide. These meticulously designed donation products include added features intended to offer comfort, quality, and dignity to those experiencing homelessness.

Over the years, Bombas' mission has grown into an enormous movement, with more than 75 million items donated to date and a focus on providing support and visibility to the organizations and people that empower these donations. These are the incredible individuals who are doing the hard work to support those experiencing —or at risk of—homelessness in their communities every day.

Folks like Shirley Raines, creator of Beauty 2 The Streetz. Every Saturday, Raines and her team help those experiencing homelessness on Skid Row in Los Angeles “feel human” with free makeovers, haircuts, food, gift bags and (thanks to Bombas) fresh socks. 500 pairs, every week.

beauty 2 the streetz, skid row laRaines is out there helping people feel their beautiful best

Or Director of Step Forward David Pinson in Cincinnati, Ohio, who offers Bombas donations to those trying to recover from addiction. Launched in 2009, the Step Forward program encourages participation in community walking/running events in order to build confidence and discipline—two major keys to successful rehabilitation. For each marathon, runners are outfitted with special shirts, shoes—and yes, socks—to help make their goals more achievable.

step forward, helping homelessness, homeless non profitsRunning helps instill a sense of confidence and discipline—two key components of successful recovery

Help even reaches the Front Street Clinic of Juneau, Alaska, where Casey Ploof, APRN, and David Norris, RN give out free healthcare to those experiencing homelessness. Because it rains nearly 200 days a year there, it can be very common for people to get trench foot—a very serious condition that, when left untreated, can require amputation. Casey and Dave can help treat trench foot, but without fresh, clean socks, the condition returns. Luckily, their supply is abundant thanks to Bombas. As Casey shared, “people will walk across town and then walk from the valley just to come here to get more socks.”

step forward clinic, step forward alaska, homelessness alaskaWelcome to wild, beautiful and wet Alaska!

The Bombas Impact Report provides details on Bombas’s mission and is full of similar inspiring stories that show how the biggest acts of kindness can come from even the smallest packages. Since its inception in 2013, the company has built a network of over 3,500 Giving Partners in all 50 states, including shelters, nonprofits and community organizations dedicated to supporting our neighbors who are experiencing- or at risk- of homelessness.

Their success has proven that, yes, a simple pair of socks can be a helping hand, an important conversation starter and a link to humanity.

You can also be a part of the solution. Learn more and find the complete Bombas Impact Report by clicking here.

via UNSW

This article originally appeared on 07.10.21


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