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News / City Life

This new web app will let you help London’s homeless this winter (even if you don’t carry change)

Next Meal app

Homelessness is one of the biggest problems London faces. Most Londoners want to help homeless people, but if you’re reluctant to give them money (or just don’t have any change), the Next Meal web app is another way you can make a difference.

It’s a simple web app that lists places where homeless people in London can find food and support. Developed by volunteers, it uses GPS to find the nearest open soup kitchen or shelter so you can point the person on the street in the right direction.

Just bookmark the Next Meal website so you can check it whenever you come across someone on the street. You might be able to point them towards the support and advice they need, a bed for the night and some free hot food this winter.

Here are 28 more ways to make London better.



Hello I

I’m homeless and Next Meal is completely useless for homeless. Everybody who goes to Muswell Hill Soup Kitchen has told Martin Stone it’s useless but he’s caught up in a world of delusion and won’t listen!

Why did Martin Stone decide to do a website about soup kitchens when he’s completely clueless about where they are as he’s never set foot in them? He doesn’t even know the soup kitchens in his own borough Haringey, let alone the rest of London, let alone the rest of the country. What is he going to tell us homeless about soup kitchens when he doesn’t have a clue himself?

I mean, there’s plenty to keep Martin Stone busy at Muswell Hill Soup Kitchen. It’s so bad it needs scrapping and starting from scratch - obviously with somebody with lived experience of homelessness running the place!

Martin Stone has been in the job for 10 years but is completely clueless about how to run a soup kitchen. Muswell Hill is one of the worst soup kitchens in London. Out of 350.

Dreadful interiors with horrible fold-up tables and even more horrible red velvet chairs with the initials RSM. I think that stands for really s... meal. Dreadful fluorescent lighting. 

The food is not edible, why hasn’t Martin stone recruited volunteers who can cook? The soup is like diarrhea, vegetables cooked 5 times longer than they should and a kilo of curry powder thrown in to disguise the burnt flavour. The main course is too disgusting to describe, just thinking about it is making me feel sick. The pudding is processed cake, if you haven't vomited by this point.  

Muswell Hill Soup Kitchen does not at all meet the needs of roughsleepers. No showers. No laundry. No lockers for roughsleepers to store their belongings. The clothes are shocking - in such bad condition they're not wearable. Last week they had 3 dungarees made from padded sleeping bag like material. Are we homeless going skiing any time soon? And clothes in such bad condition they're only fit for the bin, like pajama bottoms with a huge hole between the legs.

Muswell Hill Soup Kitchen is only open for one hour. As soon as you arrive, it’s nearly time to go. But to be honest, one hour is as much you’d be able to tolerate. It’s not a place where you’d want to be any longer.

But nevermind all that, Martin Stone is distracting himself from how dreadful his soup kitchen is and wanting to have a website about other soup kitchens so you can upgrade to decent soup kitchens elsewhere! How thoughtful!

James, it goes without saying Next Meal is a website, not an app. Don’t you know what an app is?

You clearly haven’t spoken to homeless before writing your article. You have no understanding at all of homelessness or of soup kitchens, and obviously neither has Martin Stone.

Less than 10% of people who use soup kitchens are homeless. Even fewer are roughsleepers.

Most roughsleepers will never, ever beg.

Most beggars are not homeless. Most beggars would never go to a soup kitchen. Beggars will not stop begging if they know where soup kitchens are.

Now with this new found knowledge, analyse your article. Next Meal has no impact at all on homelessness or on begging.


@Hello I Would be great to get insight into why you feel the site is useless? Removing your feelings on the Muswell Hill soup kitchen specifically, what is missing from the Next Meal site that you would benefit from? It is a directory where someone in need can find information on a soup kitchen near them. So genuinely interested to hear your feedback on why it is missing the mark.

John B

Can we add another venue?  'Pack-Up' offers a hot lunch at the Church Hall of St James' Church, Prebend Street, Islington  N1 8PF every Monday from 12noon.