Ukraine crisis

Celebrity chef and former owner of the Little Geranium in La Cala de Mijas


CELEBRITY chef and former owner of the Little Geranium in La Cala de Mijas, Steven Saunders is throwing his weight behind his plan to assist Ukrainian refugees.

Working with his new business partner Shaina Galvin at the Willow Tree Restaurant in Bourn Cambridgeshire, he has created the Odessa Project.

Through this, they hope to link refugee families with well paid jobs and accommodation in the UK’s hospitality business.

He says that hospitality is on the floor in the UK with many places having to restrict business or close due to lack of staff.

Chef Steven was on Sky News TV with Kay Burley on Monday March 14 and received a huge amount of support for his project as well as The Catering Magazine which brought in 250 enquiries to assist with jobs and rooms in just one day.

He plans to travel to Poland this weekend to meet up with potential workers as he has 300 jobs lined up as well as accommodation for some 600 people and isn’t prepared to wait for the authorities to give him the ok.

Steven said, “I have been in the hospitality business all my life but have never had to beg chefs to work like I have had to since Covid.

“I have the full support of The Master Chefs of Great Britain and the UK hospitality industry; all I need now is government support to Fasttrack visas.

“My friend Sir David Wright is assisting me and has put me in touch with some senior officials who are working fast to get a solution to the visas.

“My aim is to get as many refugees into the UK as possible, offering them security, jobs and homes.”

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