Relief Funds

From left are Marvin Lewis, Shana Batts, Leta Lacey, Weeks Worsley, Michele Benton, Donna Ellis, Michaela Powell, Crystal Harriss of Benvenue Country Club.

The Benvenue Country Club Employee Relations Committee raised funds for the N.C. Restaurant Workers Relief Fund during its annual Holiday Charity Give.

Employees raised $3,500 for the relief fund, which is run through the N.C. Restaurant and Lodging Association.

Over half a million state residents work in the food service and hotel industry, but as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the majority of those workers have lost their jobs, their income and their entire livelihood.

In response to this economic crisis, the N.C. Restaurant Workers Relief Fund was established to provide immediate financial assistance to the tens of thousands of cooks, servers, dishwashers, housekeepers and others who live paycheck to paycheck.

Restaurants were some of the first businesses severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Dining in restaurants virtually stopped overnight as social distancing guidelines took effect across the country. Many restaurants were able to develop a different business model and adapt to the new realities, but many others continue to suffer.

Because of the unprecedented fallout, it wasn’t difficult for the Benvevue Country Club Employee Relations Committee to choose the N.C. Restaurant Workers Relief Fund as its 2020 recipient. The $3,500 raised will be allocated to workers affected by the layoffs and shutdowns in the Rocky Mount and Nash County area.

“This year, the committee was determined to put all their efforts into raising money for an industry so affected by the pandemic. They worked really hard to make this happen,” Benvenue Country Club General Manager Michelle Benton said.

Contributions for a silent auction came from several businesses around the area. Local artists Ray Martin, Jessica Pierce and Marion Weathers and member businesses such as Bulluck Furniture, Davenport Autopark, TGN Pearls and Weldon Mills Distillery contributed services and items for the auction.

Priscilla Whitaker, a country club employee for 39 years, spearheaded a bake sale that proved to be successful and significantly added to the funds for the relief effort.