Northern Ireland news

Restaurants, printing firms and distilleries among businesses helping out during coronavirus outbreak

Staff at Bangkok Thai restaurant in Belfast donated food to healthcare workers at the Royal Victoria Hospital

RESTAURANTS, printing firms and distilleries are among the businesses lending a helping hand amid the coronavirus crisis.

Workers at Bangkok Thai restaurant in Belfast, which has been forced to close during the outbreak, cooked all its remaining food and took it to the Royal Victoria Hospital for healthcare workers.

It posted a message on its Facebook page saying it wanted to perform a "final act of kindness".

"Off to the Royal Hospital to feed the heroes keeping us safe. This team of people make us so proud. We are happy & sad."

District 45 in Magherafelt, Co Derry, which has also been forced to close, cooked more than 250 meals for free for the vulnerable and elderly on Thursday.

All of the meals were picked up within an hour.

Staff and volunteers at Artillery Youth Centre and the Bosco cafe and bakery in north Belfast are offering to help elderly and vulnerable people by going shopping for them twice a week, running a community library and making and delivering Sunday dinners.

The centre has asked anyone who knows of a friend or neighbour in the area who may need help to contact them on 9090 7423.

Staff are donating some of their wages to the project and are asking for support from people in the community.

Several distilleries are also using their equipment to make hand sanitiser

The Still House in Moira, Co Down, the Copeland Distillery in Donaghadee, Co Down, and the Boatyard Distillery in Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh, are giving out sanitiser for free.

The Still House has now exhausted its supplies but said it will post updates on social media if it is able to produce any more.

Print management company QLC Solutions, based in Portadown, Co Armagh, has offered to print education packs for schools for free.

Director Barry McDonald said: "We have installed printing stations and can add further devices if needed so that teachers and supporting staff from any school can print for free as long as this crisis exists.

"All that we ask is that they bring paper.

"Many schools are finding that they need to bulk print education packs for children so that they have the material to study from home and with imminent school closures many staff are queueing to print.

"QLC are hoping to alleviate this issue with pre-booked time slots that will allow staff to avail of this much needed resource."

The company is open for any teacher in Northern Ireland. Teachers can book a printing slot on 3835 0057.

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Northern Ireland news