Raleigh’s #HopeForHospitality eases pressure on service industry workforce during COVID-19
The new initiative partners with local restaurants to provide free meals for area hospitality workers affected by COVID 19
Raleigh, NC – Hospitality entrepreneur Gaurav “G” Patel is on a mission to help his friends in the hospitality industry stay on their feet during the hardship brought by COVID-19. Last week, G launched a partnership with local restaurant peers to provide one free meal per weekday to affected workers in the hospitality industry.
“It’s a small token of our appreciation to our friends who have served us time and time again,” G shared of the inspiration behind the project. “We hope it can help them have one less thing to worry about day-to-day and ease the pressure during this challenging time.”
So far, partners on board to support the growing initiative include Jake Wood’s Lawrence Barbecue, Jon Seel’s Virgil’s Original Taqueria, Samad Hachby’s Mulino Italian Kitchen & Bar, Niall Hanley’s The Raleigh Beer Garden, G Patel’s Edwards Mill Bar & Grill, Jason Smith’s Cantina 18, Michelle Woodward’s Diced, Sullivan’s, and Chris Powers/David Woody Lockwood/David Meeker’s State of Beer.
Impacted members of the hospitality community can sign up for meals at https://gpreneur.me/2020/03/hopeforhospitality-free-meals-for-hospitality-professionals-displaced-due-to-covid-19/.
COVID-19 has already had a large impact on the hospitality industry in North Carolina. G, along with other restaurant leaders, citing impact statistics from the North Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association noting that, when combined, “restaurant and lodging establishments provide jobs for more than 13% percent of the state’s workforce and generate more than $23.5 billion in sales annually. Direct job losses of employees who serve the North Carolina hospitality community and work in restaurants and hotels is estimated to be approximately 385,000”. The data already collected estimates that “more than 75% (361,425) of North Carolina’s restaurant and foodservice workforce has faced layoffs as a result of closures and reduction of staffing associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Beyond weekday meals for hospitality employees, a GoFundMe® online fundraiser has been launched to raise and distribute funds to participating restaurants to use for staff members or other critical needs.
“The impact is very real and very close to home. In order for #HopeForHospitality to reach more of our industry friends, we’re looking for people to help us get the word out by sharing links – or, if they have the ability to give right now – contributing to our online fundraiser that will support our restaurant partners who are providing the meals,” added G during an April 8 video conference.
Letty Cooper, one of the impacted service-industry employees from Raleigh Raw, offered her appreciation for the offering: “In all the uncertainty due to COVID19, I’m so grateful that H4H is proving reliable meals for those affected in the service industry.”
G and his team plan to keep the initiative operating through April or until restaurants reopen, anticipating a distribution of funds after completion of the initiative. For restaurant owners interested in partnering, please contact G Patel directly via email or phone.
For more information and daily updates, follow G on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/gpreneur.me. To become a restaurant or fundraising partner, please contact G at GPatel@EschelonExperiences.com or by phone at 919-656-3327.
About G Patel
Gaurav “G” Patel’s entrepreneurial journey began at a very young age in India. His values derived from his time working under his family when moving to the US at the age of 10, where hard work and good judgment of moral ethics were paramount. 15+ years of dynamic experience across product development, hospitality, education, and mentorship have given G critical experience in the trenches of entrepreneurship.
Weathering the highs and lows of building businesses across many industries has molded G’s perspectives and helped him go beyond hospitality to impact his community and be a force for change in multiple ventures.
Today, G is a Husband, father, entrepreneur, and mentor. G truly enjoys helping others who are looking to grow personally or professionally. Driven by his purposeful work ethic, G hopes to bring his experience and learnings to add value to individuals and businesses.