‘Tis the season for giving and what better way to show love and appreciation than dedicating your time to a charity? Our favorite chefs have shared how they play Santa Claus to some of their favorite charities and organizations. Whether it's delivering food to hungry families in New Orleans, combatting childhood obesity and championing healthy eating, or speaking up for those who can’t speak for themselves, chefs have given back in more ways than one. This holiday season, show your love and support and consider donating to one of their charities, as food is the one thing that unites the world.
In 2011, John Besh and his team created the John Besh Foundation to promote and protect the culture of New Orleans through scholarships for inner city minority youths and micro loans to area food producers. But during the holidays, the American chef, restaurateur, author, and BFF of Aarón Sánchez, works with Shine Your Light Charity to provide haute creole Christmas meals to families in need.
“We provide everything Christmas, from presents to food and drink,” said Besh of the foundation. “It also advances the development of our unique city. As for Shine Your Light, during the holidays, I like to have my children involved cooking and spending time with me. The boys cook with me and we deliver the meals to families and Mm friends are there at the same time with presents for the family and together bringing meaningful Christmas experiences.”
In order to garner attention for his charity, Besh hold the Fetes de Chef Gala in March, as well as special pop up dinners throughout the year. He also recently collaborated with Billy Reid to create an apron with proceeds going to the foundation.
“Donating to either of these charities is a rewarding experience,” said Besh. “In both cases, you would be benefitting vulnerable populations to give them a meaningful holiday and in the case of the John Besh Foundation, to further the culture of New Orleans.”