Did you know that in UK hospitals, there is no kosher breakfast option? And while those patients on traditional hospital menus get three meals a day, alongside snacks and drinks, Jewish patients have only a narrow selection of defrosted long-life meals to choose from.
Bedside Kosher’s mission is to provide every Jewish patient in a UK hospital with fresh, healthy and delicious meals. The kind of food that feeds the soul, and helps recovery.
Before the pandemic hit, most Jewish patients could rely on relatives bringing in food parcels, full of familiar and nutritious food, to make up for the lack of cultural food in hospitals. However, now visitor restrictions are in place, patients can’t get these home comforts. We have heard many disturbing stories of patients going without food, sometimes for days. Hospital is stressful enough, without having to worry about keeping kosher when the choices are so limited and unappealing.
This is why our team of over Four hundred community volunteers has given their time, kitchen space, and driving skills to prepare, cook and deliver tens of thousands of free, fresh kosher meals, snacks and drinks to Jewish patients throughout the UK.
We have also provided free comprehensive training to relevant NHS staff so they can learn the basics of a kosher diet, the principles of kashrut, and how kosher meals should be heated and served.
Patients, or their relatives, can request meals 24/6 through our care line. Patients will then receive fresh breakfasts and dinners, and special meals for the likes of Shabbat and Yom Tov. We also cater for those with special dietary needs, such as vegetarians or diabetics. And, of course, we provide a child-friendly menu.
“Have arranged to renew my daughter’s booking every Friday. Having heard her excitement tonight (after 5 consecutive pasta bolognaise hospital meals this week), I’ve no doubt your wonderful efforts will aid her recovery.”
“Thanks so much! Your light good meals are the only thing I can eat. Hospital food is far too heavy.”
“After I was hospitalised for over a week with severe tonsilitis and then pancreatitis Bedside Kosher came to the rescue with hot chicken soup (aka good old Jewish penicillin) and more! Such an amazing charity.”
To provide fresh meals over the last year, it has cost us around £650,000. And with demand for our services continuing to increase, our overheads are only going to rise.
We are working hard to engage with NHS trusts so that all Jewish patients can receive the same standard of fresh, healthy diet that other patients receive.
Until then, we need your help and support, so we can continue to deliver fresh kosher food to those who need it, at what is often the most stressful and difficult time of their lives.
All our volunteers give up their time and resources for free, and that means every penny you donate goes directly towards sponsoring a nutritious meal to a hospital patient.