Words by Jobe Baker-Sullivan / Pics by Ed King
India Garden is a restaurant that prides itself on serving classic Indian dishes, specialties, and desserts.
Located at 992 Tyburn Road, India Garden Restaurant has been involved in catering for over 35 years – suppling large Council venues and supermarket chains, as well as operating their popular Erdington based restaurant.
But as the scare of COVID-19 was first hitting the country, the family run business began helping neighbours who were struggling to buy goods from supermarkets – using their own stock, alongside established links with their suppliers.
Now India Garden are delivering free food parcels to over 60’s in Erdington – packed with essential goods including hand sanitizer and loo rolls, as well as a hot meal from their own kitchens.
“We’ve been here (in Erdington) for a long time and it’s the locals that have supported the business,” tells Shaan Deen, India Garden’s Operations Manager, “and we thought we’ve got to do something.
“So, we thought, 60 plus, anybody, free of charge… we’re just going to give them food parcels with essential items – a hot meal, curry, rice, bread, and then all the hand sanitizers, loo rolls, baked beans… and whatever else we can. So that’s what we did.”
India Garden began telling existing customers about their ‘coronavirus campaign’ over the phone, but news of their good will soon gained a lot of attention on social media.
“We threw it onto Facebook and it just blew up from there,” continues Shaan, “people started tagging, and we started getting lots of enquires. Genuinely they wanted to donate; I can give ₤100, I can give ₤50. And we said we don’t want your money, but we need the manpower – if you can come and help us deliver, then give us a shout.”
India Garden now have 72 volunteers helping them deliver care packages to around 211 people, with teams going out five days a week.
“It wouldn’t be possible without the volunteers, from the local area,” continues Shaan. “People were saying ‘we only live up the road – we live in Castle Vale; we live on Paget Road…. And before we knew it, we’d gathered a lot of volunteers. I want to highlight that; the volunteers play a big part. They’re good people.”
The restaurant have also launched their ‘Tag a Hero’ campaign, encouraging social media followers to tag NHS workers – winning frontline staff a free, sumptuous, Indian meal, delivered to their door.
To find out more about India Garden Restaurant, who are still open for takeaway orders, visit www.indiagardenrestaurant.co.uk
Or visit the India Garden Facebook page, where you can ‘tag a hero’ and help NHS frontline workers win a free meal www.facebook.com/IndiaGardenBirmingham