In a time of crisis, Chick-fil-A® restaurants find ways to give back
When COVID-19 hit New York City this spring, the small town of Commack, New York — sitting approximately 40 miles away in the center of Long Island — saw a sharp surge of cases. Chick-fil-A Commack local restaurant Operator Bryan Beasley wanted to do something to help.
As new cases swept across the Island, Beasley organized deliveries of free meals for nearby laboratory workers, men and women who were working nonstop behind the scenes to meet demand for testing.
“They are working around the clock to complete this desperately needed testing,” Beasley said. “But since they are offsite from medical facilities, they seem to have been a bit overlooked.”
Across the country in Tacoma, Washington, Chick-fil-A Operator Lynnae Schneller was also looking for ways to give back. Schneller, who runs the 38th & Steele restaurant, decided to offer customers stamped envelopes and stationery to create personalized “Thank You for Your Care” cards that they could send to first responders.
“So many people wanted a chance to thank a first responder during this time, and we thought this was a fun way to offer a contactless outlet to do so,” Schneller said.
Fulfilling local needs
Like Schneller and Beasley, many Chick-fil-A Operators tapped into the $10.8 million community relief fund distributed by Chick-fil-A, Inc. this spring to fulfill needs in their local communities.
Throughout the month of April in Allentown, Pennsylvania, Chick-fil-A Trexlertown gifted 1,000 boxed meals each week to workers at three local hospitals. In Little Rock, Arkansas, Chick-fil-A Cantrell Road delivered more than 2,000 boxed lunches to local firefighters, ER staff, nursing homes and EMTs. In Mount Airy, North Carolina, when schools were closed but government professionals were still mobilized to deliver lunches to children in need, Chick-fil-A Mount Airy organized surprise food packages and personal notes of gratitude to those workers.
And, in some cases, multiple Chick-fil-A Operators joined forces to give back. In Alabama, upon learning that truck drivers were facing significantly limited food options because of drive-thru constraints on their routes, a group of Tuscaloosa and Northport-area Operators partnered to help construct two truck stop tents on opposite sides of a highway to serve truckers a free meal and care package.
Closer to home
Sometimes, the beneficiaries of Chick-fil-A Operator relief efforts hit closer to home: Team Members and their families.
At Chick-fil-A North Olmsted, in Ohio, Operator Ken Ball used the relief fund to provide meals to each member of his staff. To spread the goodwill further, he asked each Team Member to seek out an additional family in need to receive a free meal. At Chick-fil-A Delray Beach, in Florida, Operator Susan Leffert used a portion of the relief fund on grocery gift cards for her Team Members, and another to support grocery workers themselves, working at the five grocery stores within two blocks of her restaurant. And, the Operator at Chick-fil-A Ross Clark Circle, in Dothan, Alabama, offered Team Members three free meals a day via the restaurant drive thru — no questions asked.
Chick-fil-A Operators serve their communities every day, in ways big and small, seen and unseen. Thank you Operators for being the heartbeat of our company, during this time and always.