May 30, 2008

Food Bank benefits but look who is (not) helping.

Saw a brief peice in the Coastland Times telling about a fund raising event for the Food Bank of the Albemarle. The 2008 Dine Out to Help event takes place on June 10th. Local restaurants across the Albemarle region will donate 10% of their income to the support the Food Bank's efforts to fight hunger in the region. The fight gets harder as food prices soar. Across the county food banks are facing increases in users and decreases in food stocks. Agencies like our local Food for Thought program are seeing costs rise and supplies sink as they leverage food bank resources to provide weekend meals to school age kids in the county.
OK there's the plug. Go eat out at one of these restaurants on the 10th.

Nice list, it contains a lot of the usual suspects but what struck me was the lack of local chains. I have written a bit about the role of locally owned businesses in supporting local charties and building local wealth. This simple example really brought it home. Notice who is not on the list, the big chains like Applebys, Hooters and that Aussie wannabe place at the Mall that started the trend. Yes the big burger chains are there but these are all locally owned and operated franchises. The McDonalds folks are out of Elizabeth City and have owned the place since it opened. There are lots of locally owned eateries that aren't on the list but the absence of the chains is just striking. When you look at the regional list you see the same trend.
Yes the chains do support some local projects but they just don't have the same commitment to the full spectrum of local needs. The Food Bank is an important one.
I plan to eat out on June 10th and now I know where I won't be eating. The hard part will be picking just one restaurant for the list of great local spots. Hope I see you there.



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