Coffee shops around the world are beginning the process of cautiously reopening their doors in some capacity, many after a few months hiatus, but make no mistake about it, this is far from the beginning of the end of COVID-19 and its deleterious effects on businesses (to say nothing of the much more significant and entirely avoidable mortal cost being paid thanks to slow-to-act or economy-over-people-minded governments). Even with demand high—a recent study of 4,000 individuals found that, other than seeing friends and family, folks missed visiting cafes and coffee shops more than anything else during the stay-at-home orders—cafes are going to struggle to make ends meet as the new normal begins to take shape.
That’s why the Allegra Group is stepping up. In partnership with Alpro and the UK Coffee Week, Allegra has created the In It Together Fund, a relief effort created specifically to assist independent coffee shops across the United Kingdom, and they are calling on more donors to help with the overwhelming interest they have already received.
Creators of the London Coffee Festival and the cadre of global offshoots that followed, the Allegra Group is no stranger to the UK coffee scene. But like UK Coffee Week, all the excitement and festivities surrounding the London Coffee Festival that make it a truly global attraction had to be postponed due to the pandemic. And instead of sitting in wait, Allegra, UK Coffee Week, and LCF sponsor Alpro are pitching in to make sure the scenes they were built to celebrate remain as vibrant as ever.
With the In It Together Fund, independent coffee shops in the UK with less than five total locations are eligible to receive financial assistance in the form of a one-time donation of £2,500. Per the website, limiting to brands of this size was based on “feedback [they have] had from the industry is that the smaller independents are the ones who are really in need.” Beyond that, though, there are no restrictions on who can apply.
Funds are being dispersed on a first come, first served basis, but the number of eligible applicants has already been significant, so much so that the fund has had to temporarily shut down the application process while they sort through what they have already received. And with the overwhelming application pools comes the need for more funding. While Allegra, Alpro, and the UK Coffee Week are working to secure more funding, they have also put the call out to individual donors as well. It could be £5, it could be £5,000, no amount is too small.
So if you find yourself desperately wanting to visit your favorite cafe and have perhaps saved a few extra quid in you time apart, consider giving it to the In It Together Fund. For more information on how to donate, reach out to [email protected] For a full list of the terms and conditions, visit the In It Together Fund’s official website.
Zac Cadwalader is the managing editor at Sprudge Media Network and a staff writer based in Dallas. Read more Zac Cadwalader on Sprudge.
Top image via the In It Together Fund