Restaurants, for which France is famous, have closed their doors during lockdown in order to reduce the spread of the COVID-19 virus, but many chefs have kept their aprons on and are cooking for the poor or health care staff.
Michelin-starred Chef David Gallienne, from the Michelin-starred restaurant “Le Jardin des Plumes” in Giverny, supports hospital staff in Vernon, Evreux and Mantes-la-Jolie by preparing 160 meals a day. This kind gesture is made possible thanks to a call for donations, and with the support of the restaurant’s fifteen suppliers and small producers who participate on a voluntary basis in the initiative.
For his part, the two-starred chef, Christophe Hay, from the restaurant “La maison d’à côté” between Blois and Chambord, goes twice a week to elderly care homes to cook while respecting and adapting to the special diets of the residents.
While all motorway restaurants are closed, Michelin-starred chef Laurent Poulet and his team of volunteers distribute meals along the A8 motorway near Cannes for the truck drivers who continue to work. This initiative is organized in collaboration with Vinci Autoroutes and relayed over the radio waves.
Poulet is not the only one on the road, other volunteers, such as Secours populaire, share meals in different motorway areas all over France.
The Paris Saint Germain football club distributes up to 1,200 meals a day to Paris hospital staff. The meals are prepared in the kitchens of the Parc des Princes, then distributed by 60 volunteers in food trucks that were usually present around the stadium during football games.
Pierre Sang, finalist of the cooking show “Top Chef”, a Frenchman of Korean origin, joined in the #UNitedWeEat initiative launched by the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) to share healthy and balanced recipes during the lockdown. WFP invited chefs, food critics and influencers from around the world to share tips and tricks on social networks.
You can participate in the challenge by taking a photo or video of a balanced dish and encourage three friends to do the same using the #UNitedWeEat and #StayHome hashtags on social networks. Since its launch, this campaign has reached 31 million people.
The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) supports the Refugee Food Festival, a culinary and solidarity project for the reception and integration of refugees. During the pandemic, this initiative prepares hundreds of free meals every day.