Employee Relief Funds Established for Wharf Workers

In the wake of a citywide shutdown of usual business operations, among the hardest hit is the service industry, such as restaurants and bars. Many of the employees are not receiving the income they would if this were normal times, which it isn’t.

There are now several opportunities to reach out to your favorite bartenders, door staff, servers, and cooks in the service industry to help them out during this crucial time.  Currently, there are found employee relief funds that can be found on Go Fund Me.

Jammin Java & Union Stage Employee Relief Fund

The Brindley brothers, who own Jammin Java and Union Stage have created an employee relief fund via gofundme to help their employees get through these tough times.

In a note to supporters, the brothers said, “Our staff is the “secret sauce” that sets our clubs apart. We are now asking the Jammin Java and Union Stage community to ensure our staff have jobs to come back to after this terrible pandemic passes. Their work, along with the support of live music lovers like you will keep the clubs alive and vital for many years to come.”

The Brindley brothers, who will be matching all donations, are seeking to raise $20,000 of which every cent goes straight to the staff.

To make a donation, click Jammin Java & Union Stage Relief Fund

Kith/Kin Staff Support

Chef/owner Kwame Onwuachi has set up a Go Fund Me for his employees.  The restaurant is closed and is not offering pickup or take out.  The note on the Go Fund Me page say, “Our doors closed yesterday and we are uncertain when we will open again. These are unfortunate times of uncertainty for the restaurant industry and it leaves me with a lot of questions. How will my staff pay their rent when they are getting a fraction of their normal pay? How will they pay their light bills, gas bills, car notes etc. Here at Kith/Kin we stand for friends and family. If you are a supporter of mine or the restaurant I truly appreciate you but I would be nothing without the people behind me. Please support them in anyway that you can. Thank you.”

To make a donation, click Kith/Kin Staff Support

Rappahannock Employee Relief Fund

Ryan and Travis Croxton set up a fund in hopes of raising $15,000 expressly for their employees.  On the Go Fund Me page, they wrote, “Firstly, we want to thank everyone for the tremendous support you have shown us as we operate in a limited capacity at our restaurants and oyster company due to the spread of COVID-19. We truly feel blessed, even in this trying time. Many of you have been asking how you can support our most impacted employees directly. For that reason, we wanted to set up a GoFundMe expressly for them.”

“What this crisis has done to hospitality workers is devastating. And that includes an entire support industry of trucking companies, food purveyors, equipment leasing companies, linen companies, farmers, fisherman – just to name a few. All of these businesses have come to a screeching halt.”

To make a donation, click Rappahannock Employee Relief Fund

Brighton (H2 Collective Family Fund)

The ownership group that owns Brighton, among several other DC bars and restaurants set up a Go Fund Me in hopes of raising $100,000 for its employees.  On the Go Fund Me page, they say, “From Day 1, our goal has been to provide people with a place they can go to escape from the daily grind, to encourage our community to gather around over drinks, eats, and well, be social.

Throughout the years, our family of staff members have worked tirelessly to bring happiness to the Brixton Rooftop, El Rey Margarita Garden, American Ice Co’s patio, as well as many other wonderful venues. And now, because of what’s going on in the world, we can no longer operate normally, and many of those same team members have been displaced.

Many of you have reached out asking how you can help. Here’s how:

We have set up a Family Fund to assist those team members currently displaced. You can help contribute to the fund by sending a donation, or you can support our temporary To-Go Window at El Rey (919 U Street NW) or takeout and delivery operation at Echo Park / Andy’s Pizza (2014 9th Street NW.)

Each purchase includes an automatic contribution as well as an option to add an additional gratuity that would go the fund. 100% of the money received will go directly to our employees affected by current events. H2 Collective is covering any charges or fees involved in the distribution of funds.”

To contribute, click H2 Collective Fun

I.M.P. Family Fund

I.M.P., which owns The Anthem as well as several other DC music venues, has set up the I.M.P. Family Fund to help support its hourly employees during this time. For every gift card purchased, I.M.P. will matched with a donation to the Family Fund. One the Anthem website, they say, “Because of the pandemic and the cancellations and closures it has caused, most of our employees will be out of work for a while. We’ve set up the I.M.P. Family Fund to provide need-based relief to them. If you can spare it, a donation will be greatly appreciated. We are in the process of setting up the proper legal entity and will be sure to get you a proper receipt well before your 2020 taxes are due!”

To purchase gift cards, click I.M.P. Family Fund

Virtual DC Tip Jar

Tip your bartenders and servers! Since the effects on DC’s restaurant and bar industry have set in, a spreadsheet listing 2,106 people in the service industry has made its way around social media.

It’s a simple Google spreadsheet that lists the name of the restaurant/bar/club (and some coffee shops), the name of the service/bartender, how to tip them via Venmo or PayPal, and whether or not they have healthcare insurance (most don’t).

To access the spreadsheet and tip your server, go to: DC Virtual Tip Jar.




KNEAD Restaurant Workers Relief Program

KNEAD hospitality group, which owns Mi Vida and The Grill, has launched a program to help feed service industry workers every day for the foreseeable future. The program, The Restaurant Workers Relief Program in Partnership with Marker Mark, will create a new menu every day between 5pm-8:30 at 915 F Street, NW (Succotash location). Everyone will be asked to show proof of recent work at a restaurant, a paystub will suffice in most cases. KNEAD expects to serve 200 to 300 meals per day on a first come, first served basis.

Anyone wishing to donate supplies, should contact christina@kneadhd.com.

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