Employee Experience

Providing a Lifeline for Food and Beverage Workers: Southern Smoke Foundation

Under Pro Resources on the Gigpro app you'll find both Giving Kitchen and Southern Smoke Foundation.

In the fast-paced and often unpredictable world of the hospitality industry, workers face a myriad of challenges, from long hours to fluctuating incomes. When unforeseen circumstances strike, such as a natural disaster, health crisis, or personal tragedy, the impact can be devastating, leaving individuals and their families struggling to make ends meet. However, amidst the chaos, there is a shining beacon of hope: the Southern Smoke Foundation.

At Gigpro, we're committed to highlighting organizations that make a tangible difference in the lives of those within the hospitality sector. Today, we're proud to shine the spotlight on Southern Smoke Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing emergency relief funds to individuals in the food and beverage industry.

Who is Southern Smoke Foundation?

Founded in 2015 by James Beard Award-winning chef Chris Shepherd, Southern Smoke Foundation has quickly become a vital lifeline for hospitality workers facing crisis situations. What began as a small event to support a friend with multiple sclerosis has evolved into a nationwide initiative that has raised over $6 million to date.

What Do They Offer?

Southern Smoke Foundation offers financial assistance to individuals in the hospitality industry facing hardship due to unexpected circumstances. Whether it's medical bills, housing expenses, or other critical needs, they strive to provide relief when it's needed most.

One of the most remarkable aspects of Southern Smoke Foundation is its ability to mobilize support quickly. Through partnerships with restaurants, chefs, and beverage professionals across the country, they host fundraising events, auctions, and campaigns to raise funds for their mission.

But their support goes beyond just financial aid. Southern Smoke Foundation also offers mental health resources, recognizing the importance of emotional well-being during times of crisis. They provide access to counseling services and support groups, helping individuals navigate the emotional toll of their circumstances.

How Can You Help?

As members of the hospitality community, we understand the importance of supporting one another during challenging times. Whether you're a chef, server, bartender, or industry enthusiast, there are numerous ways to get involved with Southern Smoke Foundation:

Donate: Every dollar makes a difference. Consider making a one-time donation or becoming a monthly supporter to help sustain their efforts long-term.

Attend Events: Keep an eye out for Southern Smoke Foundation's fundraising events in your area. Not only are they a great opportunity to show your support, but they also offer a chance to connect with like-minded individuals in the industry.

Spread the Word: Share Southern Smoke Foundation's mission with your friends, colleagues, and social media followers. The more people who know about their work, the greater impact they can make.

Refer Someone in Need: If you, a member of your team, or someone you meet in the Food and Beverage community are facing a hardship, they can apply for assistance by visiting https://southernsmoke.org/emergency-relief/.

By coming together as a community, we can provide much-needed support to hospitality workers facing adversity.