Customers of Stratford’s popular artisan gelato shop have donated more than 600 scoops of ice cream to NHS staff and care workers to say thank-you for their hard work.
The ice cream parlour café bar, owned by local mother and daughter team Sara Young and Sasha Barke, is the largest independent business on Stratford upon Avon’s High Street and reopened in May, offering contactless takeaway treats.
Hooray’s has been crowdfunding online and in-store to encourage customers to donate a treat for NHS staff. Hennie, Hooray’s Gelato Van, has visited hospitals in Shipston-on-Stour, Stratford, Leamington and the Rosedale Care Home, delivering the treats straight to workers during their shifts.
Key workers who visit the store have been given a free scoop with extra toppings, along with a huge thank-you from the Hooray’s team on behalf of their customers.
Sasha said: “We would like to say thanks to everyone who has gifted a scoop to all the wonderful NHS and frontline staff – we have really enjoyed delivering these treats to the staff and feel privileged to hand them out on behalf of our customers.
“As soon as we have enough donations, our next stop is Warwick Hospital to serve up a cold treat to as many of the 1,000 staff there as we can.”
As a local business, Hooray’s wanted to pull their weight wherever they could during these difficult times, using their resources and contacts to support the local community.
As well as delivering groceries, gelato cakes, family-sized tubs of ice cream and DIY Sundae-Making Kits, much thought has been given to ensuring this most seasonal of business can make it through what would have been peak times.
Cllr Izzi Seccombe, Leader of Warwickshire County Council, said: “This is an excellent example of how businesses have come together to support the local community and key workers, which has been at the centre of the region’s response to the pandemic.
“Local NHS staff and care workers have dedicated themselves to fighting this disease and for local companies to use their resources to thank them in this way is testament to how our communities are all pulling together and acknowledging the efforts being made across the county.”
Hooray’s is also a Member of Shakespeare’s England, the Destination Management Organisation for South Warwickshire promoting tourism in the region.
Helen Peters, Chief Executive, added: “We are delighted to see so many Shakespeare’s England Members doing what they can to support the local community and thank local NHS and care home workers for their selfless work during the pandemic.
“Hooray’s’ initiative is a fantastic example of this. Sasha and Sara are great entrepreneurs and Hooray’s has been a very welcome addition to Stratford-upon-Avon’s offer, to both residents and visitors, since it opened in 2013.
“The tourism industry will undoubtably be hit hard by the impact of the virus, but so many businesses like Hooray’s have used their resources to help their communities, which really highlights the strength and commitment of their support to the region.”