NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — At The Greek Olive in New Haven, business was virtually at a halt. That’s when a daughter’s tweet helped to activate a new option.
Jennie Antonakis saw firsthand the sacrifices her parents made over the years running the family business. With takeout only accounting for about 5% of their business pre-pandemic, she had to do something. So she did.
Antonakis, who lives in Los Angeles, now, works for Twitter. As a viewer of the show, “The Profit”, she was aware that host Marcus Lemonis was promising to award $100,000 to local restaurants. So, she reached out to Lemonis on Twitter. Her tweet, and her prayers, were answered.
Lemonis donated $20,000 – good for 4,000 meals that go to local shelters. He developed a program, called “Plating Change,” which assists small businesses like The Greek Olive to accept donations and then using those funds to create meals. The cost of the meals is kept low to drive revenue toward the restaurant.
“So you buy Bowls of Hope, which are pre-packaged, 16-ounce meals, well-rounded meals. And the stipulations were that it can be heated in the bowl that it’s in or reheated if you needed it to be. Or that it could be eaten the way that it was. And that it would be nutritious for the people who are getting it, and also cost-effective for the restaurants so that everybody wins,” Antonakis explained.
Now, The Greek Olive is delivering Bowls of Hope to five or six organizations, including New Reach and Martha’s Place. So, while trying to help her parents, Jennie is also helping others.
For information on how you can donate to keep the program going-as well as paying their staff, visit the download link below and the restaurant’s official website.
Donation Link: https://www.toasttab.com/the-greek-olive-new-haven/v3