Russia invades Ukraine, Kharkiv endures heavy shelling


A Ukraine-based humanitarian kitchen linked to celebrity chef José Andrés has been destroyed by a Russian missile in the northeastern city of Kharkiv, according to the charity that runs it.

One of the restaurant partners of the World Central Kitchen (WCK) was struck on Saturday, according to the nonprofit kitchen’s CEO Nate Mook, who confirmed the news on Twitter. He said four staff members had been injured in the blast.

“An update I hoped I’d never have to make. I’m at a @WCKitchen restaurant in Kharkiv, where less than 24 hours ago I was meeting with their amazing team,” Mook wrote alongside a video of himself standing amongst burnt out cars and severely damaged buildings.

“This is the reality here — cooking is a heroic act of bravery,” he continued.

On Sunday, Mook shared an update from Kharkiv, indicating that the injured staff “were doing well” and the restaurant team were in the process of moving “all food products & non-damaged equipment” to another location in the city.

“The work doesn’t stop,” he added.

Mook posted another photo on Twitter of three restaurant staffers who he said were recovering after the missile attack.

“I want to introduce you to 3 brave staff from @WCKitchen restaurant Yaposhka! Yulia, Liza, and Yulia are in good spirits & recovering in the hospital after the missile attack,” he tweeted.

The northeastern city of Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second-largest, has been under regular heavy bombardment since Russia began its invasion more than six weeks ago.

Andrés has also taken to Twitter to address the strike, as well as provide an update on the well being of staff at the restaurant

Founded by Andrés in 2010, the WCK, an organization focused on providing meals in disaster and war zones, has been supplying food to Ukrainians since the start of the conflict, with units in around 30 cities across the country, according to its official website.

On April 15, Andrés shared a graphic detailing the scale of the organization’s operation in Ukraine, including setting up over 300 restaurants and delivering over 300,000 meals a day.

“We believe that a plate of food is sometimes the beginning of a better tomorrow,” Andrés says in a video posted on Sunday.


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