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Virtual Happy Hour Donations to Aid Restaurant Workers

Restaurant door with "closed" sign
Many restaurants in Virginia have closed entirely to help slow the spread of coronavirus. (Photo: David Streever/VPM)

*VPM intern Alan Rodriguez Espinoza reported this story.

Restaurants and other businesses across Virginia have closed to help slow the spread of the coronavirus. While access to state unemployment and small business loans have been expanded, service industry workers are losing out on tips, a major source of revenue.

The Holli Fund, an organization that provides grants to service workers facing economic hardship, is raising money to help them today with an online fundraiser.

Holli Fund Board Member Cheryl Magazine explains that the need for social distancing has taken a significant toll on the city’s service industry workers.

“They’re devastated,” Magazine said. “They don’t know where to turn because they’re looking at an economy that’s quaking, and although there’s a lot of talk from Congress about what might happen, that doesn’t help them pay their bills today or tomorrow.”

The fundraiser is inviting those in quarantine to enjoy a sip of their favorite drink at home, then make a donation.

All of the proceeds will be used to directly pay  rents, car payments, mortgages and other regular expenditures for service workers who are currently out of work.

The virtual happy hour will last from noon today through 7 p.m., but donations are welcome any time outside of that. You can help out by texting “DONATE” and the donation amount to 804-518-8333