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Be inspired - Article
27 NOV 2020


Social distancing, self-isolation, and regular curfews keep us physically apart but that hasn’t stopped us from coming together as a Sri Lankan community (figuratively of course) to support friends, family, and local businesses. Despite this new reality, it has been encouraging to watch communities come together and support each other by staying in touch, practicing responsible consumption, and respecting the advice from medical professionals.

Supporting the Local Community

A recent study conducted by Zypmedia found that price wasn't top of mind when it came to making a local purchase. Customers and businesses care a great deal about supporting their local community when it comes to times like these. Customers who love their local restaurants continue to order in, and in return; restaurant owners are showing the same support to the community in the hopes of bringing some relief and happiness during uncertain times.

As a country with rich cultural heritage, unity, and hospitality, Sri Lanka has taken much care to ensure that regular partnerships and stability are preserved within the community. This should be recognized, celebrated, and continuously replicated by individuals and local businesses during these trying times.

Here are some great local and international examples of how businesses have taken steps to support their community and give hope during these uncertain times:

  • 1. Helping the Elderly
  • Five spice, a country restaurant located in Belbroughton, offers free main courses, starters, and rice to elderly folk confined to their homes. Despite the government implementing a lockdown of all restaurants during March 2020, Five Spice ensured that its takeaway and delivery service remained active. The restaurant confirmed on social media that it would be offering free meals to the elderly and vulnerable. "We only ask that they ring us up, speak to our manager to place their order, and ask their relative/friend to come and pick up the meal. Together we can overcome this. Unity and compassion.” says its management.

  • 2. Food on the Frontlines
  • Fieldtrip, a restaurant in Harlem, New York makes an extra effort to help those on the frontlines. Joseph the owner, began this initiative due to concern for his wife, a nurse, unable to get her meals due to the rush of attending to patients. Joseph sent out 40 of his restaurant’s signature rice bowls with a selection of meats and vegetables to a hospital in Harlem which ceased its food service due to the pandemic. After sharing this initiative on his Twitter page, people started joining in to help support the delivery process and the momentum kept continuing from there. This initiative also helped Joseph bring back seven of his staff members to make and deliver donated meals.

  • 3. A Feast for the Stranded
  • Chinese Mee, a restaurant located in Kathmandu, Nepal has been a popular tourist spot for sightseeing foreigners. Since the nationwide lookdown placed in March 2020, the restaurant had been busy with duties outside their regular norm. Providing free meals to stranded tourists became a part of their daily operations until end April 2020. Despite difficulties to secure three meals a day, Carol, the restaurant owner takes pride and passion in helping out when she can. "It's nice to do something for other people during the lockdown" she said. To offer Carol a helping hand, foreigners stranded in the area from France, Italy, Japan, and Vietnam joined in to help out while enjoying free meals. Some volunteered as cooks, cleaners, and dishwashers while taking all the necessary precautions and maintaining order in the restaurant. "It is a great pandemic. It is the right time to show love in its broad sense," adds in one of the volunteers.

  • 4. Sharing is Caring
  • Spending lavishly on promoting menu items is a luxury during COVID 19. To help spread the work on merchant’s restaurant promotions, the team at appiGo has been sharing local restaurant’s content across various social media platforms. In addition to offering a pack of free marketing materials to all its onboarded merchants, the company supported merchants during repeated lockdowns and curfews by helping them find fresh produce and ingredients. Several merchants including “The Sizzle”, “Kenko 1st Organic Food” and “Mango Tree” reported a growth in orders from these initiatives. To show their support in return, these merchants provide appiGo riders with free meals as a token for their hard work.

    How can you help the local community during these trying times?

    • Order Online : Despite the fact that we are working from home, we still need our basic necessities in hand. A lot of local businesses have opted for online ordering solutions that allow you to place orders from the safety of your home. This is a safe, convenient, and contactless solution that supports local businesses.
    • Craft your Cooking Skills: What better time to learn to cook a new dish than during your long stay at home? Take meal planning into your own hands while you are able to support the local community through purchasing fresh local produce.
    • Keep Moving Forward : Staying at home can feel isolating at times but it is encouraging to know that it is for the betterment and fast recovery of the country. Despite staying at home, find ways to incorporate exercise into your daily regime through personal trainers or coaches that offer their services online. Another great way to support freelance businesses!

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