In our latest series called “Small Business, Big Heart,” we’re highlighting the stories of business owners across the country who are creating hope through their generosity, amidst the uncertain times brought on by Coronavirus (COVID-19). In each episode, we tell the story of how these businesses are pivoting their business model and paying it forward, providing inspiration and insights to the small business community.
Tso Chinese Delivery
Bringing the heart of the South to life, Tso Chinese Delivery is providing free meals to people impacted by COVID-19, despite facing their own challenges, like losing existing relationships with caterers who can’t currently operate. They’re even making sure Tso’s employees always have the option of a free meal.
Inspired by their story? Please consider supporting Tso’s efforts by donating to their GoFundMe efforts.Donate to this cause
Dave Puente Photography
When portrait photographer Dave Puente’s phone stopped ringing, he started a new type of portrait work—called the Porchtrait Project—photographing families from a safe distance, on their porch, at no cost. His goal? To inspire hope during a challenging time for so many.
If you want to help Dave bring joy to more families, make a contribution to his GoFundMe.Donate to this cause
The Art Guild of Port Washington
With the hope of spreading solidarity during a trying time, The Art Guild of Port Washington started The Great Rainbow Community Hunt, encouraging community members to create rainbows to display in their home or business. This visual arts center, which typically offers free on-site classes and exhibits to the community, quickly pivoted their non-profit to curate exhibits online.
To help The Art Guild continue to make art accessible for everyone through online classes and exhibits, consider giving to their GoFundMe efforts.Donate to this cause
Austin’s Couch Potatoes
While this retail furniture store had to shut their doors, they shifted their manufacturing to make masks and gowns for frontline heroes—using the same material they use to create pillowcase linings—fueled entirely by their staff volunteering their time.
Help Austin’s Couch Potatoes create even more personal protective gear by donating to their GoFundMe.Donate to this cause
This grocery subscription company partners with local farms to rescue produce that would otherwise go unsold, delivering fresh fruits and veggies to customers’ front doors. Right now, they’re providing food delivery to seniors and immune-compromised residents, free of charge.
Just $10 pays for groceries for an individual in need for an entire week – consider donating to Good Apple’s GoFundMe cause.Donate to this cause
Brickway Brewery & Distillery
While they’re continuing to produce craft beer and spirits, Brickway Brewery & Distillery also started producing hand sanitizer with just a few additional ingredients. To date, they’ve given away more than 1,000 gallons of sanitizer and are encouraging other businesses to think about how they too can pivot their operations.
To help fund supplies for hand sanitizer production, donate to Brickway’s GoFundMe page.Donate to this cause
Eric Dayton, co-owner of the apparel store Askov Finlayson and restaurant Bachelor Farmer, is helping put Minnesota cooks back to work, creating meals for the food insecure community.Donate to this cause
Crema Bakery & Cafe
Worried about kids who might be missing meals while not in school, Crema started offering bagged lunches to students and others in need. To date, they’ve given away more than 800 meals and have even turned their café into an affordable food pantry, offering curbside grocery pick-up.
If you want to help provide meals to kids and those in need, make a contribution to Crema’s GoFundMe page.Donate to this cause
Traditionally a manufacturer of custom wood products, like journals and phone cases. After seeing a drastic drop in demand, Woodchuck USA shifted its business to start making face shields to donate to frontline professionals in need of protection.
Help get more face shields into the hands of healthcare professionals fighting COVID-19 by contributing to Woodchuck’s GoFundMe initiative.Donate to this cause
Leo’s Grill & Malt Shop
This malt shop in Stillwater, MN is accustomed to giving back, but in the midst of COVID-19, is raising money to support Cystic Fibrosis research by donating 10% of lunch sales (Monday – Thursday) for the entire month of May.
To help support this at-risk demographic, donate to Leo’s GoFundMe efforts.Donate to this cause
Street Factory Media
Street Factory Media is in the business of experiential design for events, but with most events put on hold, they’ve started fabricating a “Safe Serve Door System” that allows businesses to retrofit their front door to serve customers through a “drive-up” style window.
To help additional retailers and restaurants retrofit their business to offer curb-side services, support Street Factory Media via GoFundMe.Donate to this cause
Literacy Volunteers of Chautauqua County
Literacy Volunteers provides free one-on-one literacy tutoring to adults, educating students on the English language, basic computer literacy, and other life skills. This non-profit relies heavily on donations and has seen a drastic drop in funding since the start of COVID-19.
Help more students receive the literacy assistance they need through distance learning by donating to Literacy Volunteer’s GoFundMe page.Donate to this cause
P’zazz Art Studio
P’zazz Art Studio has converted to online classes and is offering free art demos via Facebook Live, with the mission of providing children not only with art skills, but with life skills. Even amidst the pandemic, P’zazz is continuing to give back by supporting Rice Bowls, a non-profit partner providing meals to orphanages around the world.
Consider donating to P’zazz to help send meals straight to undernourished children.Donate to this cause
Laney & Lu
Committed to offering nourishing food through their holistic eatery, Laney & Lu started donating salad bowls and smoothies to healthcare workers and community members experiencing food scarcity. While they’ve received a few generous donations, most of the giving has stemmed from customers who, when placing their own order, opt to “Give a Bowl or Smoothie” to someone in need.
To donate a healthy, energizing meal to medical professionals and help support Laney & Lu’s team members, donate via GoFundMe.Donate to this cause
Make.Do. Creative Studio
This non-profit studio offers “pay what you can” creativity classes, with the mission of connecting the community around them. Without the ability to hold in-studio classes, and with most of their revenue traditionally coming from donations, Make.Do. has made over 1,500 masks to date to sell to non-healthcare workers.
To help provide free masks to people whose careers put them at higher risk, like social workers, consider donating to Make.Do. Creative Studio’s GoFundMe project.Donate to this cause
Natural Lifemanship provides training for mental health professionals who help their clients via equine-assisted therapy, using horses to positively impact mental health. While many patients are experiencing symptoms like anxiety, so too are mental health providers, which is why Natural Lifemanship is offering “pay what you can” training to these professionals.
Support Natural Lifemanship by donating to their GoFundMe cause, which will offer scholarships to mental health professionals in need of training.Donate to this cause
After temporarily closing multiple locations, Hott Salons started selling root rescue kits and beauty boxes to clients online and providing virtual one-on-one consultations before clients tackled their at-home services. Not only is the salon using proceeds from these boxes to support their staff, they’re giving away a beauty box each week to one lucky healthcare professional.
To help Hott Salons continue donating beauty boxes to our most critical workers right now, consider contributing to their GoFundMe efforts.Donate to this cause
Little Medical School
Little Medical School offers STEM-based curriculum is to give kids exposure to medical careers, in a fun and interactive format. While the school has been forced to move their classes online, they’re continuing to educate students about the healthcare industry, including candid conversations around the current pandemic.
To help more kids gain access to scholarships in order to attend Little Medical School, further reinforcing how critical our frontline workers are, consider donating to their GoFundMe page.Donate to this cause
GoFundMe is on a mission to help small businesses around the country survive the economic hardships caused by the COVID-19 pandemic through the Small Business Relief Fund. This fund—created in partnership with Intuit QuickBooks and Yelp—will provide a $500 match* to businesses that raise at least $500 via GoFundMe and are negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
*Conditions apply – for more details, visit GoFundMe’s The Small Business Relief Initiative and Fund FAQs page.