Bird Lovegod set up the ‘Good News’ website two years ago as a way of spreading good, ethical news, but after the pandemic hit decided to focus his efforts on doing good deeds to help people in poverty in Sheffield and renamed his website ‘Ethical Much!’.
These deeds, shown individually on Ethical Much!, involve Bird paying for electricity and delivering food parcels to some of the poorest areas of Sheffield – sometimes four or five times a day.
Now on 417 good deeds, Bird has created a subscription print magazine to raise more funds to keep supporting those in need across the city after funds raised from sponsorship and a Go Fund Me page ran out.
Bird Lovegod, who lives in Nethergreen, said: “I started Ethical Much! about two years ago as a good news website, an experiment to try and create the most ethical social media, to see what that would look like.
"It was a side project for a year, and then when the pandemic landed everything changed.
"I felt that, for a starter, there wasn’t good news left in the world and I really felt like I needed to do something, and be useful and to help people.
"There were all the frontline workers, and key workers, so I thought, ‘I can’t just sit here for the next six months or however long’.
"I saw on a community app there was a chap that couldn’t leave his house because he had Covid and he had run out of food and electricity and he was asking, ‘can anybody help?’
"So I thought, ‘I can help’. I put on my homemade PPE and went and brought him a couple of weeks of shopping and got his electricity topped up for him. That was the 100th good dead on Ethical Much, and the first of the Covid ones.”
Bird posted cards through doors in areas that could be in hardship, originally directing them to his website – but, due to the fact there was a lack of WiFi or smart phones in the areas, there was originally no uptake, until Bird added his mobile number.
Soon, there was an uptake of ‘one in ten’, and the demand started to snowball.
He originally delivered to areas such as Exeter Drive in Broomhall, and the nearby Washington Street flats, before word got out across the city – to areas that Bird had not even visited, such as Gleadless – that support was available if it was needed.
"At one point I was doing four or five deliveries a day, I would go to Aldi and buy people one or two weeks’ worth of shopping, and put £10 on their electric,” Bird said.
“Some people text a shopping list, and I always ask if they have allergies or whatever, and they include shampoo and toilet rolls. Because its shopping in Aldi, I get fresh vegetables and fresh fruit; everyone got melons this week.
"At Christmas I got people big, £50 shops. I’ll get them aromatic duck, and steaks, that’s what they want.”
Following the creation of the print magazine, which comes out every two months, Ethical Much! has a number of subscribers and volunteers helping out and donating funds.
Lishmans LLP accountants in Chapeltown even do the accountancy for Ethical Much! for free, and also give money to the project.
A subscription costs either £5 or £10 a month, and one-off donations are also welcome, with you being told directly where your money has gone via text or email.
Visit ethicalmuch.com to see the list of good deeds, and find out how you can help by subscribing or donating to the cause.