I am so excited to let you all know that I am only half way through the Crowdfunder and already I have raised well over half the money that is needed to renovate my One Euro House. As I write this the total is £10,020, thank you so much to all of you who have donated. There were times when I was a bit hesitant about starting the Crowdfunder as I know that many people are struggling financially at the moment. This is why it was important for me to launch the young Chef Training program for chefs from around the world as it meant that the project would have relevance for many people, not just for the town of Mussomeli and Sicily.
Over 130 people have donated from around the world and that is truly extraordinary. Everyday I read the comments on the Crowdfunding page and I am so humbled when I read the messages of support. If you need a little boost then read what the community has been saying. I have raised money for charities and causes in the past and this is the first time that I have ever started a fundraising campaign for a project that I am solely responsible for on this scale. I have learnt so much through the experience and on those days when self doubt started to creep in, I have stayed connected on my Social Media channels updating everyone on the progress of the campaign and also how life is here in Sicily. I know being online is nothing like human connection, however, it has helped me immensely.
The way that Crowdfunding works is that you offer various rewards for the community in return for a donation. One of the rewards that I am offering is that everyone's name who donates will appear on the "Gratitude Wall" that is going to be painted on one of the walls in the kitchen. I received a beautiful message from someone who donated £10. The person emailed to say that she was sorry for the small amount as it was all that she could afford and could she nominate to have her Mother's name on the wall as she had just passed away. This was so incredibly moving and I said of course, this is absolutely fine and that it would be my pleasure to do this. I shared this story on my Social Media channels and let everyone know that they too can nominate to have someone else's name on the wall and that it did not matter how much they donated. I then started receiving beautiful messages from people from all over the world nominating loved ones and I am so looking forward to creating the "Gratitude Wall" and sharing pictures of it when it is complete for all of the supporters to see.
There are other rewards on the Crowdfunding page as well. Lunch in the Community Kitchen when it launches and also 2 nights accommodation in the One Euro House with all food and an Italian cooking lesson. This has proved to be very popular. I know that it is a challenge to travel at the moment so there is no time limit on when you can claim the reward and come and stay, it will be my pleasure to welcome you. Thank you to all of you who have donated, it feels like my story is resonating with many of you and your love and support keeps me going.