The California Restaurant Foundation (CRF), a non-profit that invests in and empowers California's restaurants and its workforce, partnered with Guy Fieri to surprise five California independent restaurant owners with $25,000 grants during Guy’s Restaurant Reboot presented by LendingTree on June 12, 2021. The five beneficiaries selected by CRF to receive the “Help Restaurants Rebuild Grant” include PorchBox Restaurant in Laguna Hills, Lêberry Bakery & Donuts in Pasadena, Rollin Roots food truck in San Diego, Doggos Gus Mexican Gourmet Hotdogs in Imperial Beach and Maya Halal Taqueria in Oakland.
“We’re proud to partner with Guy and his team to inspire, encourage and provide financial assistance to these five incredible California restaurants during this critical time,” says Alycia Harshfield, Executive Director for CRF. “Restaurants were especially hard-hit by the pandemic, creating unprecedented challenges for owners and their employees and a void in the hearts of American diners; I think we’re all ready to return to the table. Teaming up with Guy’s Restaurant Reboot is an exciting opportunity for us to foster support for California restaurants and further rebuild the industry.”
Fieri, a world-famous chef, restaurateur and Emmy Award-winning TV host, is a longtime supporter and Emeritus board member of CRF. The goal of his “Help Rebuild Restaurants Grant” is to provide guidance and inspiration to the next generation of restaurant owners as well as bottom-line funding. In addition to the five recipients put forth by CRF, an additional six individuals were awarded scholarships in partnership with the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF). In total, $300,000 was presented to CRF and NRAEF beneficiaries via grants and scholarships.
“I’m honored to receive this opportunity from Guy Fieri and LendingTree and can’t wait to use the funds to expand into a brick-and-mortar restaurant and retain staff members during these times,” adds Avonte Hartsfield of Rollin Roots. “This is a definite stepping stone towards reaching my lifelong goal of owning a thriving restaurant and I can’t express how grateful I am to Guy and LendingTree for their generosity."
Over the past 15 months, CRF has helped more than 1,570 restaurant workers, their families and businesses. Through its many programs and partnerships, the non-profit continues to work tirelessly to address the influx of demand with the goal of supporting as many in California’s restaurant community as possible.
CRF is currently accepting additional support from corporations, foundations and individuals who want to aid in the restaurant recovery.
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