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Christmas charity dinner off the table due to Covid-19

Chef Michiko Campbell (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

The chef behind a Christmas charity dinner scheduled to be rebranded and moved to the summer said he would not revert to the festive season this year.

Michiko Campbell, also the creator of Chiko’s Smokey Rub, said he was “disappointed” that he could not spread some Christmas cheer because of the coronavirus threat.

Mr Campbell warned that the event may not be held next summer if the pandemic continued to be a problem.

He said: “Right now we are on a standstill because we’re not sure when we’re going to do it again.

“My team and I haven’t even met about which direction we’re going to go in right now, so we’re not really sure of the new direction until we can get some insight from the Government.”

Mr Campbell has served free Christmas meals to the underprivileged almost every year since 2015.

He said last year that he planned to host a final Christmas dinner in 2020 before he moved the event to summertime.

But Mr Campbell said this week that the drive, which was planned to be a family event to raise money for children, came off the table because of coronavirus restrictions.

He added: "Our new target date will be in June, but I don’t know how it’s going to work if we still continue to go through the motions of Covid.“

Mr Campbell said that there could be additional regulations around public gatherings next year that could affect his plans.

He added that there was a huge need for his charity event this year because many people had lost their jobs and needed a “helping hand”.

But Mr Campbell said a lot of people might avoid charity events because of health concerns.

He added: “It’s sad because I did like putting on the event.

“Everything that’s going on now has just been a big adjustment for people to get used to.”

Mr Campbell advised people to donate gifts and food to neighbours or loved ones that they knew were struggling.

He also appealed to the public to donate cash to charities so they could continue to help the less fortunate.

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Published December 23, 2020 at 8:00 am (Updated December 22, 2020 at 6:53 pm)

Christmas charity dinner off the table due to Covid-19

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