Namaste Village offering free meals to those worried about money
- Credit: Sonya Duncan
A popular restaurant has urged people to make the most of its free meals scheme as families are feeling the pinch from rising costs.
Namaste Village in Queens Road launched the scheme five years ago to help support the community with a hot meal.
They are pushing people to make the most of it now more than ever, with director Vijay Jetani saying: “This is a scheme which allows anyone to have a meal without losing their dignity.
“But it also gives people in our community the chance to do a random act of kindness.”
The scheme, named Dosa On The Wall, works by people dining at the restaurant opting to donate the funds for half a meal with the restaurant matching the other half.
When the meal is paid for, a sticker is put on the wall, anybody in need can go into the restaurant and grab a sticker.
Vijay said: “This scheme has taken so many different directions in its time.
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"We’ve used it to help the homeless and we’ve used it to help essential workers during the pandemic.
“Now we think we will see different kinds of people in need because the cost of living has gone up dramatically.”
So far Dosa On The Wall has enabled 7,000 meals to be shared within the community and Vijay hopes that the scheme will inspire others to help people in any way they can.
He said: “We don’t want people to feel like they have to be homeless to come in and enjoy a meal, this is for anyone who is struggling.
“You do not need to tell people about the meal, nor do you need to share your experience on social media, just come in and enjoy your meal with a smile.”
He added the scheme is now more popular than ever before and can only continue thanks to donations from diners.
Vijay said: “A meal is a basic need for people, so we want them to have it.
“We have compassion for people and we believe the scheme is an asset to our business and our fine city.
“We want people to know that in this city we think about others.”