Funding bid to get pizza man back on road after car stolen in Belfast
Friends help out delivery driver after theft of car
A fundraising appeal has been launched to support a pizza delivery driver whose car was stolen and written off in a crash last month.
Matin Rasuli has been off the road and out of pocket since the incident in the early hours of St Patrick's Day when his black Toyota Auris was stolen while making a delivery for Domino's Pizza in west Belfast.
Matin (32), who is originally from Afghanistan, has lived and worked here for more than 12 years.
Friend Martin McAtear has started a gofundme campaign with a £2,500 target in order to raise money to help get Matin back on the road so he can start earning again.
Martin told the Belfast Telegraph: "Matin was sent for a delivery to the Brittons Drive area at around 3am on March 17.
"When knocking on the customer's door, someone jumped into his vehicle and stole it.
"It happened while Matin was beside the vehicle and the customer was already outside.
"As he spoke with the customer someone hopped into the car behind him and drove off.
"The car was driven a mile before it was crashed into the wall of a house and written off.
"His insurance company has said they don't cover deliveries and he would require business insurance.
"Domino's have also said there is no cover or support that they can offer under their insurance. I know it's not really their fault but it's just extremely unfortunate circumstances."
With the support of the local community, Martin is confident of turning around his friend's fortunes.
"Matin's vehicle was his only source of transport and his only income was through delivering," he explained.
"This all happened in the same week that Matin received his permanent residency.
"That was fantastic news, but now he finds he is struggling to make ends meet.
"He hasn't been able to leave the UK for many years while trying to get his residency sorted, so he hasn't seen his family for a long time.
"He was so looking forward to saving up to go home for a visit but at the moment he has no money coming in to make that happen."
Abbey Everett of Domino's, said: "Domino's operates a franchise model and delivery drivers are able to use their own cars.
"In such circumstances, occasional business use insurance is provided, though unfortunately most policies will not cover vehicle theft where the keys are left in the car.
"However, we of course sympathise with Mr Rasuli's situation and the franchisee is in touch to discuss employment opportunities elsewhere at Domino's."
To donate and help Matin visit gofundme.com/car-stolen-during-pizza-delivery