The National LGBT Chamber of Commerce and the global online food delivery company Grubhub will continue a $2.1 million grant program they began last year to provide financial support to struggling “LGBTQ+ owned and ally” restaurants and bars through 2022 and 2023, according to LGBT Chamber President Justin Nelson.
In a June 28 statement, Nelson said last year’s program provided nearly $2.1 million in grants to more than 100 LGBTQ+ and allied restaurants in 2021. At the time the program was announced last year, organizers said the grants would range from $5,000 to $100,000 for qualifying restaurants and bars that serve food from a menu to help them with financial difficulties related to the COVID pandemic.
Grubhub provided the funds for the grants through the Grubhub Community Fund, which, among other things, raises funds from Grubhub customers through its Donate the Change program. Nelson said more than 30 LGBTQ+ affiliate chambers from across the country helped the national group select which restaurants and bars were awarded the grants in 2021.
The D.C. LGBTQ sports bar Pitchers and A League of Her Own, its adjoining lesbian bar, were among the program’s recipients of a $100,000 grant last November.
“Building on last year’s success, we are continuing our partnership with Grubhub in 2022 with the support of a $2.1 million grant from the Grubhub Community Fund,” Nelson said in his statement. “This year, we will focus the restaurant grant program on LGBTQ+ and allied restaurants and establishments in New York City, Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Denver, and Portland, as well as cities throughout California,” Nelson said.
Nia Perkovich, a spokesperson for the Grubhub Community Fund, said LGBTQ or allied restaurants and bars that are eligible for the grants will not be restricted to the “focus” cities. She said the grant recipients for the renewed program this year will likely represent a “wide geographic array” throughout the country.
She said the 2022-2023 grant cycle has not yet opened, but full details of how to apply for the grants will be announced at the time the program officially opens for this year.
“Eligible establishments include any LGBTQ+ owned or LGBTQ+ ally-owned restaurant, bar or café that serves food,” Perkovich said.