Restaurants Taking Action During COVID-19 (and How You Can Help)

Whether it’s donating to a charity, relief fund, or simply sending food to hospital workers, there are plenty of ways you can help your community. Below is a (growing) list of restaurants and brands that have jumped in to help.

NOTE: since the outbreak of COVID-19, there have been a TON of GoFundMe accounts created, so I can’t possibly list them all here. THAT SAID, if you know of one that you don’t see here and you’d like to promote (your own or someone else’s), you can drop it in the comments below! Also feel free to post a story about it on Instagram and tag me so I can share it! Handle: @skinnypignyc.

Stay safe everyone!

Restaurants Taking Action During COVID-19

  1. FreshDirect/NY Common PantryFreshDirect has teamed up with NY Common Pantry, whose mission is to reduce hunger and promote dignity, health, and self-sufficiency. The recent concern over coronavirus has impacted NYCP’s volunteer base and ability to serve some of NYC’s most vulnerable communities. FreshDirect is standing with NYCP by assisting with the packing and provision of meals for our neighbors in need. Donate with your next FreshDirect or FoodKick order, or donate directly at
  2. Feed Our Frontline – started by Annmarie Toole, who partnered with various pizza shops across NYC to deliver pizza to our frontline workers, has raised over $42,000 on their GoFundMe page! Sauce Pizzeria, Marios of Syosset, Barosa, and Radio City Pizza were among the participating restaurants. Donate right here.
  3. Ess-a-Bagel/Feed The Frontline Workers of NYC – Longtime customer of Ess-a-Bagel, Peter DiGioa (and his girlfriend, Brooke Smalley), started a GoFundMe to help send food to the hospital workers on the front lines of the COVID-19 crisis. COO of Ess-a-Bagel, Melanie Frost, enlisted the the help of other restaurants like Honeybrains, Oxverte, and Doughnuttery. Thus far, they have provided breakfast and lunch to the ICU ward at Mt Sinai and the nurses at the ICU COVID-19 unit at NYU, as well as Jacobi Hospital, Montefiore Einstein, and Montefiore. Link here to donate!
  4. Black Barn Restaurant – Chef/owner John Doherty has partnered with Frontline Foods NYC, World Central Kitchen, and Seven Rooms to help hospitals by making meals that are distributed to Bellevue Hospital, Mount Sinai UES, and Columbia Milstein ER. The meals are delivered by his staff in no-contact tote bags that the hospitals keep to reuse. No waste! 
  5. Buy This T-Shirt – this online shop is creating merch for a group of restaurants, and 100% of the profits go to that restaurant and their staff to help keep themselves afloat. Visit their website here to buy.
  6. King Umberto – this place has amazing pizza, and now you can order pizza to donate to a nearby hospital at
  7. ROAR NY – Relief Opportunities for All Restaurants (ROAR) is a New York State based hospitality coalition with a simple goal: to wake up the public and lawmakers by raising our voice, unified and strong. ROAR has partnered with Robin Hood to raise donations for a New York City restaurant relief fund, and if restaurants are as important to you as they are to me, make a donation here.
  8. FlipSigi/Feed Our Warriors – Jordan Andino, chef/owner of FlipSigi and his team have started the Feed Our Warriors campaign. By donating to this page, you will be helping to fund their efforts to send prepared meals to various healthcare providers (nurses, doctors, technicians, administrators, etc.) during their long shifts. Donate here.
  9. RWCF Covid-19 Emergency Relief Fund – Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation, an advocacy nonprofit that has established the Restaurant Workers COVID-19 Crisis Relief Fund to provide immediate assistance to those who have been laid off due to coronavirus closures. The RCWF Board of Directors has approved directing funds raised during this crisis to be allocated in the following ways: 50% FOR DIRECT RELIEF to individual restaurant workers, 25% FOR NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATIONS serving restaurant workers in crisis, 25% FOR ZERO-INTEREST LOANS FOR RESTAURANTS to get back up and running. You can donate directly right here.
  10. Alidoro/World Central Kitchen – donating 20% of sales of their small batch olive oil to World Central Kitchen. They’re also doing delivery/takeout from their 39th Street location (open M-F, 11 am – 3 PM), with individually wrapped items/utensils, and DIY Mimosa and Aperol Spritz kits, including everything you need (glasses too)!
  11. Playa Bowls/Help Our Heroes – New Jersey’s original superfruit bowl shop has launched the #HelpOurHeroes campaign, asking customers who are ordering for take-out and delivery to make small donations to a GoFundMe Page created by each Playa Bowl franchise (link here). Playa Bowls then uses these funds to deliver meals to those on the front line, including first responders, hospital workers and nursing home staff.
  12. City Harvest – One of the best charities out there. I have attended many events hosted by City Harvest in the past, and they are staunchly committed to their cause, rescuing and delivering food for 2.5 million New Yorkers. And per the website, during COVID-19, BlackRock is matching every donation, dollar-for-dollar, up to $750,000, through June 30. Donate here.
  13. Beck and Call/Feed Those Who Are Fighting – Beck and Call is a catering company here in Williamsburg that decided to turn a bad situation into a positive one. They basically couldn’t operate as a catering company given the fact that gatherings of any size are prohibited, so they pivoted their business model to delivery/takeout and have been working hard to help raise money to donate food to feed those on the frontlines. They just delivered 100 boxes of food to Elmhurst hospital in Queens. Donate here.
  14. DoughDoughnuts/Frontline Sweet Support – DoughDoughnuts (and other bakeries) will be providing free boxes of treats to hospitals for our dedicated, incredible healthcare workers around the tri-state area who are tirelessly battling the COVID-19 pandemic. You can make a donation right here.
  15. Family Meal for All – Helping hospitality industry workers who have lost their jobs find free food around the city. “Family meal”, as it is commonly called in the restaurant world, is being offered by different restaurants in all 5 boroughs. The site is updated daily – you can find more info here.
  16. Grateful Hospitality Nourishment Fund – created by Chef Richard Hales and his wife, Jenny, who have pledged to raise $42,000 to provide 6,000 meals. For every $14 donation made, Grateful Hospitality will prepare a meal for a front line worker and match that donation by preparing a second meal for a second medical staff member. Donations will go directly to distributing meals to different front line organizations around South Florida as a thank you for their selfless dedication to the community.  Donate right here.
  17. Gotan NYC – Gotan is now committed to sending 250 meals daily to NYC Hospitals to feed our front line first responders. They are asking for your help and reduced pricing on their meals from $15 to $10. You can buy 1 meal (or more) right here on their website and they handle the rest! 
  18. Adda Indian Canteen – Chef Chintan Pandya and owner Roni Mazumdar have partnered with fundraiser Off Their Plate to provide meals to healthcare workers at Elmhurst General Hospital, NewYork-Presbyterian Brooklyn Hospital, NYU Langone, and others. Off Their Plate has delivered over 43,000 meals already. Click here for more info and to donate!
  19. LouLou – the newly opened French bistro in Chelsea began delivery to ICU doctors and nurses two weekends ago, with plans to continue their efforts during the coming weeks. Faced with the tough decision of whether or not to close his less than a month-old restaurant completely, co-owner Mathias Van Leyden and his partners decided to fight and began delivery/takeout. Thanks to a fundraiser set up by Seven Rooms, they began delivering meals to New York Presbyterian/Columbia University ICU staff members on Sunday, March 22nd. Loulou is asking for help through donations where 100% of the proceeds will go to preparing and delivering meals to hospital workers, and has now raised over $4,000. The restaurant has made additional deliveries to Brooklyn Methodist Hospital and Mount Sinai. You can donate here
  20. Brooklyn Chop House – the steakhouse in FiDi is making food deliveries to their neighborhood hospital, New York Presbyterian, nightly for as long as the restaurant’s doors are open. Since then, 15 other hospitals have reached out to Brooklyn Chop House for help including Sloan Kettering, Cornell Weill, Elmhurst Hospital and Lenox Hill. Without hesitation, the team at Brooklyn Chop House agreed to send meals there, and were able to get their vendors involved as well. Now the care packages include VOSS Water, Four Five Roasters Coffee, J. Kings, King Solomon Meats, Juniors Cheesecake and more. They are also offering 20% off for all first responders picking up meals at the downtown hotspot. Since starting their initiative, Brooklyn Chop House has helped feed over 2,000 hospital workers. 
  21. Carmine’s – The Upper West Side location of Carmine’s Italian Restaurant will be donating individually portioned meals on an ongoing basis to hospitals throughout the city including NYU Langone and NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia University Irving Medical Center.
  22. Treadwell Park – Merchants Hospitality’s Treadwell Park is delivering 150 meals daily to New York Presbyterian, NYU Emergency Room, Lenox Hill, and others.
  23. Beyond Sushi – The vegan, plant-based and kosher sushi chain in NYC delivered hospital meals to 42 health care workers at Elmhurst Hospital in Queens last week, as the result of a community fundraiser. The restaurant’s owners Guy and Tali Vaknin started a fundraiser of their own, where for every $200 raised, they’ll send another care package of individual meals to a local hospital. The husband and wife duo are now donating 250 hearty plant-based meals to the medical teams at Elmhurst Hospital, Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, Metropolitan Hospital, Lincoln Medical Center, and NYP/Weill Cornell Medical Center. To donate, click here

Main photo credit: @beckandcallnyc from Woodhull Hospital

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