I’m trying to avoid using the dreaded p-word that seems to have become the absolute buzzword of the current coronavirus crisis, but it is fairly safe to say that we are living in extraordinary times (yes, I used a thesaurus to avoid using the word ‘unprecedented’… oh no, it slipped out anyway!).
But while our social media feeds, newspapers and television programmes seem to be almost entirely filled with negativity, doom and gloom, I think that this is the perfect time to remember a quote that has always resonated with me:
“When I was a boy and I would see scary things on the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping’.”
And that is certainly true right now. There are essential key workers who are going above and beyond their regular duties every single day to try and keep us safe and well, while we all support their efforts by staying isolated at home – everyone from NHS staff, the emergency services, anyone associated with food production and retail, anyone working in social care, charity workers, teachers and school support staff, and a whole host of others that deserve all of the recognition in the world.
I have also been struck by how many organisations have been doing ‘their bit’ to help support the country during this period of uncertainty – including those within our own industry. Whether that’s cake supplies companies expanding their product ranges to include some basic, core household essentials (like Cakes o’Licious or Iced Jems), cake tool manufacturers switching to producing personal protective equipment for frontline NHS employees (like Sweet Stamp by Amy Cakes and Queen of Hearts Couture Cakes) or companies like Kenwood who are doing their bit to encourage us all to help those in need, with their new charitable endeavour, the Kenwood Care Package.
I think it is fairly safe to say that the nation has well-and-truly discovered the therapeutic properties of baking and I am loving seeing all of the fantastic breads, cakes and other goodies all over my social media timelines. What is even more touching is seeing the creative ways that people are finding to safely share their baked goods with vulnerable people in their local communities.
Kenwood clearly feel the same way and are encouraging the country’s bakers to put their skills in the kitchen to good use, pledging to provide the nation with simple recipe ideas to create packages of food that can be passed on to those unable to leave their home – ensuring that you are observing all social distancing guidance and recommendations at all times, of course.
What’s more, if you share your Kenwood-created, shareable bakes with the brand on social media, tagging #KenwoodCarePackage, the brand has pledged to donate £1 for every single upload to their charity of the year, Mind Havant and East Hampshire, a mental health, support and advice charity.
With so many of us already using baking to keep us going while we remain in isolation, this seems like a fantastic way to do good, simply by doing what we are already doing.
So, whether you are a Facebook user, an Instagrammer or even a Tweeter, get sharing those bakes and tagging them with #KenwoodCarePackage and let’s help raise oodles of cash for Mind – another example of a charity working hard to support those in need.
I can’t wait to see all of the amazing things that you are creating out there!
And until next time… happy caking! xx
PS. If you would like some new recipe ideas to get your teeth into, you can visit the Recipes section of Mr Baker’s Cakes: The Blog – or why not check out my new children’s baking series, Mr Baker’s Cake School over on YouTube?