DoorDash Thursday announced a five-year, $200 million Main Street Strong Pledge to empower local communities. These resources, which it will begin deploying immediately, will be dedicated toward Main Street Strong initiatives and directed by DoorDash in ongoing consultation with our Dasher Community Council, Voices from Dashers of Color Council, Restaurant Advisory Council and other community partners. They will include investments, programs, products, services, and benefits to:
- Enable Dashers to achieve greater financial empowerment and meet their professional goals;
- Empower local merchants and enable greater and more diverse equality of access in local economies; and
- Support and strengthen the communities in which we operate.
Today’s announcement builds upon relief actions and support for communities that DoorDash previously made. The first set of initiatives DoorDash is announcing as part of the Main Street Strong Pledge are:
Enabling Dashers to Achieve Financial Success
Flexible work opportunities with low barriers to entry are more crucial than ever, enabling people — particularly in those communities hardest hit by the pandemic’s economic battering ram — to earn an income almost immediately even as unemployment rates skyrocketed. Since the first stay-at-home orders went into effect in mid-March through September, 1.9 million new Dashers joined the platform and together with existing Dashers earned more than $3.5 billion during the first six and a half months of the pandemic, with approximately 60% — $2.1 billion — of that total being earned by Dashers who live in zip codes with above average Black and/or Latinx representation.
The company is taking next step today in helping Dashers secure their financial futures by announcing a multi-year partnership with the National Urban League. Together with NUL, a historic civil rights and urban advocacy organization, it will reimagine the future of the 21st century economy by creating a first-of-its-kind program designed for Dashers of color to help them attain new job skills and entrepreneurial success, and build generational wealth via financial literacy training, educational funding, job programs, and more. As Marc Morial, president and CEO of the National Urban League, says, “As economic first responders, the National Urban League recognizes and appreciates the role DoorDash has played, not only in uplifting the communities hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic, but in recognizing the structural inequalities that have contributed to our current crisis. We are grateful for the support of DoorDash and look forward to an ongoing partnership that empowers Dashers to achieve and succeed.”
Later this quarter DoorDash will also be announcing details of a $12 million Dasher rewards program that will run though May 2021, and which will highlight and recognize the commitment of many dedicated Dashers across the globe.
Empowering Local Merchants
In early October, DoorDash announced a $2 million cold weather grant program to help restaurants in six markets prepare for the winter months. The response has been overwhelming, so as it reviews current applications, it will be increasing its cold weather grant program to $10 million to expand into additional markets, including several in Canada.
Additionally, it is announcing DoorDash’s Main Street Strong Accelerator, a program launching in 2021 with a goal to help women and minority local entrepreneurs gain access to the capital and other tools they need to sustain and grow their business.
Strengthening Local Communities
Through Project DASH, DoorDash works with nonprofits and governments to serve communities through last-mile delivery. Thanks to partnerships with organizations across the United States and Canada, it has been able to respond to the enormous need in vulnerable and food-insecure communities during COVID and power more than 325,000 deliveries of an estimated 4.5 million meals in 2020 alone. The company said it is honored to deepen its partnership with United Way in 2021 with a two-year, 2 million delivery goal to further support those most in need.