StreetSmart | Dine Out and Help Out This Christmas

Food is the ingredient that binds us all together and the small change in your pocket can make a big difference.

Those are the two ideas which drive StreetSmart. Each year, at a time when many will enjoy fantastic food with family and friends, the StreetSmart campaign remembers the men, women and children across the country who cannot afford a nice meal or even a roof over their heads.

Through StreetSmart people can dine out, as well as help out in the fight against homelessness this Winter. The beauty is in the project’s simplicity. In some of the best restaurants in Dublin and beyond, a voluntary €2 donation is added to each tables’ bill during November, December and into January. This money will then be used to support the organisations providing services, housing, advocacy and solutions to those sleeping rough.

“What StreetSmart is trying to do is bring together the restaurant industry to address the biggest social crisis for a generation,” says founder Brian Cuddy in a statement. “Feedback from staff and customers has been overwhelmingly positive. Homelessness on our streets is hard to ignore and during the lead-up to Christmas, most are very happy to give a little something back after enjoying their meal.”

With more than 35 restaurants around Dublin taking part, there is something for everyone. For those who like Asian food, all the Yamamori restaurants, as well as Hang Di, are part of the StreetSmart community – as are Dylan McGrath’s food venues including Fade St Social and the Shelbourne Social.

For fans of Mexican food there is 777; for Indian there is Vermillion and Veda; for seafood there is any of the Klaw venues run by Niall Sabongi; and for great steaks there’s Dillingers, Butchers Grill, Darwins and Bow Lane Grill.

Meanwhile, joining the StreetSmart family in 2019 is Italian restaurant La Cucina; French restaurant Le Perroquet; the Malahide based Old Street Restaurant; all three of the Fish Shack restaurants; Ukiyo bar and restaurant; and the Porto House group. For a full list of participating establishments check out www.streetsmartireland.org/restaurants-list/.

In the last five years the StreetSmart community of restaurants has successfully fundraised over €120,000. All of the proceeds have gone on to help various homeless charities including the Peter McVerry Trust, Focus Ireland, Stepping Stone, Novas, Inner City Helping Homelessness and the Irish Soup Kitchen Centres.

This year, StreetSmart’s campaign is running on just 10 per cent of what it normally costs. This is thanks to the tireless efforts of Cuddy, as well various organisations generously donating their time and skills for free.

Speaking about this, Cuddy says in a statement: “We want to donate 100 per cent of all money raised through StreetSmart and are seeking corporate sponsorship to help us do that. If you know of a company who would like to sponsor the StreetSmart campaign, and have their name and logo feature on our table cards, visible to over 250,000 diners during the festive period, then please do get in touch as we want to work with them.”

“Taking part in this feel good campaign will build relationships, as well as strengthen us as a community. At the end of it, we can all give each other a pat on the back for being more pro-active about homelessness in our city.”

To contact StreetSmart, email info@streetsmartireland.org or call +353 87 775 9614. Meanwhile, for more information about the campaign, visit its website at www.streetsmartireland.org.

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