NRAEF Restaurant Employee Relief Fund raises millions; checks are mailing

The fund launched in late March provides $500 grants to restaurant workers across America who are facing financial hardship.

In late March, the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation launched the Restaurant Employee Relief Fund (REFR) to provide $500 grants to restaurant workers across America who are facing financial hardship. To help lead the campaign, the Foundation partnered with industry icon Guy Fieri, chef and host of “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.”

Almost immediately, more than 40 major businesses and organizations joined in to support the fund, including PepsiCoUber EatsTikTokWingstopConstellation Brands, Moët Hennessy USA, Ecolab and The Coca-Cola Company, just to name a few. 

Good Samaritans also answered the call, donating more than $850,000 to the fund. The Foundation raised more than $15 million in just two weeks, and 100% of every donation goes directly to help restaurant workers in need.

When the grant application site opened, the response was overwhelming, and currently more than 60,000 people have registered to apply. In fact, last week, restaurant workers were registering at the rate of 40 per second, a clear sign of just how hard restaurant workers have been hit by this crisis and their need for financial aid.

Checks are going out, and support continues to come in. To partner with the Foundation and learn more about donating to the fund, go to

Click here for a complete list of our major supporters.

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