Mowgli founder Nisha Katona organises dog show to raise money for Liverpool's Claire House

  • Claire Hannah went to the hospice to meet Nisha.

A TV chef and restaurant founder has organised another dog show to raise money for a children's hospice in Merseyside.

Celebrity chef and Mowgli founder, Nisha Katona, visited Claire House to launch the Mowgli Dog Show.

The hospice has two sites, one in Liverpool and another on the Wirral.

This is the sixth year the fundraising event has taken place.

"I built a business and I built Mowgli to enrich lives in the cities that we go to," said Nisha.

"I live on the Wirral and Claire House is that children's hospice that is literally round the corner from me.

"I know families that have used Claire House and a lot of Merseyside needs the services that Claire House provides so it was a no-brainer for me.

"I love the work they do and it's so important and the least I can do is give back."

The two-day, family-friendly event will take place at Claremont Farm on Saturday, 1 June and Sunday 2 June.

The event offers 10 canine competitions, local food, drink, and craft stalls, alongside children’s activities, live music, and funfair attractions.

Nisha continued: "I love my dogs, I love my animals to be honest and we are an animal-loving nation.

"Dogs just give so many families so much joy and give people that are lonely so much joy.

"I know that when my dad passed, it was Dave the whippet that gave my mum the reason for living... I know that sounds ridiculous, but she didn't have any pictures of our graduation, our weddings on her wall, but she had a picture of Dave and the rosette he won at the Aintree dog show.

"That's what gave me the idea to do the dog show...why don't we give people a family day out, where there's loads of food, a funfair, four-legged friends and something where every single penny of that profit goes to Claire House."

Nisha has organised the dog shows because of the joy she feels they bring to people. Credit: ITV Granada Reports

In 2023 they raised £110,000 in two days, but Nisha hopes to double that this year.

"It's a testimony to the people of Merseyside, to the people of the North West," she said.

Since launching the first Mowgli restaurant in 2014, the Mowgli Trust has donated nearly £2 million to charity.

"I was lucky enough to build a business, and the least I can do is build a business that serves the community it lives within and the wider world. It inspires others to build businesses and do the same," added Nisha.

"It's why I get out of bed, the job, Mowgli and creating that food is second nature to me. I need something that gives me that kind of guiding star, what is it that givces you focus, gives you purpose.

"We're really lucky people come and eat with us and the least I can do is give back to those who eat with us and Claire House is one of those bodies."

The event will play host to live music, lots of different types of food but visitors do not need to take a dog to attend.

Nisha said: "Just come with your nan, in doing so you're changing the world around you."

Claire House provide Charlie with planned care. Credit: ITV Granada Reports

One family that use Claire House's service are the McIntyres, whose son Charlie has a condition called Lissencephaly - a rare brain condition.

"It affects every part of his development, he can't walk, talk, use his hands and needs 24 hour care. We have to do everything for him," said Charlie's mum, Shirley.

"Now he's 14, we're used to the routine, but it was hard at first. When we first found out he was four months old, and then he had a seizure and we found out what his condition was.

"It's down to a part of one of his chromosomes being missing, so when we found out, he started not doing thing that the average child should be doing.

"Now, we're used to his routine but he needs 24-hour care."

Charlie is able to go to Claire House when he needs emergency care.

"We'd be lost without them, they've been an absolute godsend. He gets planned care, but ...if we've had a rough patch and he's not slept for a night, we give Claire House a ring and they always give us an emergency stay," continued Ms McIntyre.

"I think it's amazing what she's [Nisha] doing, the dog show is such an amazing day. I think it's lovely that she's come down, met the children and brought the dogs."

Tickets are now on sale.