Philanthropy | For Goodness’ Sake

London restaurants help give youngsters a recipe for success

Nourishing young people’s career ambitions

London restaurants help give youngsters a recipe for success

November 28 2010
Lindsay Macpherson

Taking a cue from the success of Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen chef apprenticeship programme (now rolled out in Sydney, Amsterdam and Cornwall), London-based not-for-profit Mega Mentors has enlisted top talents from Michelin-starred eateries The Square, Pied à Terre, The Ledbury and Zafferano to provide mentoring, short-term job experience in the restaurants and financial help to underprivileged teenagers.

As part of the Michelin Star project, the charity (which also provides mentoring in the fields of medicine, design and business) is auctioning a one-to-one cookery lesson, followed by a lunch for two, with Pied à Terre chef Shane Osborn.

“In London alone there are 40,000 school leavers who aren’t employed or in any further education or training programmes. The chefs’ mentoring provides real opportunities,” says Mega Mentors’ founder Keeley Prowse. Proceeds from the auction will go towards the general running of the project, which provides bursaries that allow young people to complete classes, work experience or further education to achieve their career ambitions.