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Providing Resources and Edible Relief

Providing Resources and Edible Relief

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New York City kitchens cook up plans for support

With so many restaurants incurring severe structural and financial damage as a result of the storm, members of New York City’s food-service industry have reacted with particular fervor in providing food and other resources to the city’s displaced. During and immediately after the disaster, restaurants unaffected by flood damage, with kitchens employing wood burning ovens and other equipment not affected by loss of power or gas, came to the aid of their communities by providing hot meals.

Today, 12 of the city's food trucks were deployed to locations around the city that are still without power — including Washington Square and Tompkins Square Park — in a joint effort between JetBlue and the New York City Food Truck Association. Vendors include Wafels & Dinges, Rickshaw Dumplings and Coolhaus. Eater has the full list of trucks and locations.

Brooklyn Kitchen took to Twitter yesterday with a call to action to help those in the Rockaways, one of the hardest hit coastal areas. “We're planning to go down to the Rockaways with supplies Please bring diapers, warm clothes and shoes to us and we'll deliver them.” Donations will continue through the day, with shovels and winter clothes among the most requested items.

Author's preface
Executive Summary
Download - 648kb

1. Introduction

2. The role of insects

Beneficial roles of insects for nature and humans
Entomophagy around the world
Examples of important insect species consumed
Important insect products
Download - 835kb

3. Culture, religion and the history of entomophagy

Why are insects not eaten in Western countries?
Why were insects never domesticated for food
Negative attitudes towards insects
History of entomophagy
Download - 127kb

4. Edible insects as a natural resource

Edible insect ecology
Collecting from the wild: potential threats and solutions
Conservation and management of edible insect resources
Semi-cultivation of edible insects
Pest management
Download - 765kb

5. Environmental opportunities of insect rearing for food and feed

Feed conversion
Organic side streams
Greenhouse gas and ammonia emissions
Water use
Life cycle analysis
Animal welfare
Risk of zoonotic infections
&ldquoOne Health&rdquo concept
Download - 154kb

6. Nutritional value of insects for human consumption

Nutritional composition
Beef versus insects: an example of the mealworm
Insects as part of diets
Sustainable diets
Edible insects in emergency relief programmes
Download - 2,7 Mb

7. Insects as animal feed

Poultry and fish fed with insects
Key insect species used as feed
Download - 145kb

8. Farming insects

Definitions and concepts
Insect farming
Insect farming for human consumption
Insect farming for feed
Recommendations on insect farming
Download - 105kb

9. Processing edible insects for food and feed

Different types of consumable products
Industrial scale processing
Download - 157kb

10. Food safety and preservation

Preservation and storage
Insect features, food safety and antimicrobial compounds
Download - 115kb

11. Edible insects as an engine for improving livelihoods

Insects as a part of the minilivestock sector
Improving local diets
Access, tenure and rights to natural capital
Inclusion of women
Download - 97kb

12. Economics: cash income, enterprise development, markets and trade

Cash income
Enterprise development
Developing markets for insect products
Market strategies
Download - 116kb

13. Promoting insects as feed and food

The disgust factor
Drawing on traditional knowledge
Role of stakeholders
Download - 150kb

14. Regulatory frameworks governing the use of insects for food security

Major barriers faced
Legal framework and standardization
Download - 102kb

15. The way forward


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The views expressed in this information product are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of FAO.

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E-ISBN 978-92-5-107596-8 (PDF)

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Information & Articles on Wild Plants Used for Medicine & Food:

Wild Edible Plants: Benefits, Hazards, and Major Groups
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Coniferous Forest Plants in the Pacific Northwest
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Plants That Repel Mosquitoes
There are a variety of both wild and cultivated plants that repel mosquitoes. Almost anywhere you go, it is reasonable to find several plant species that you can use to ward off these pesky critters. (read more)

Pacific Bleeding Heart Plants
Pacific bleeding heart plants are found throughout the moist lowland coniferous forests of the Pacific Northwest. It is a delicate, low-growing beauty, also known as the western bleeding heart. (read more)

Red Huckleberry Plants: A Valuable Northwest Native
Red huckleberry plants are abundant in the northwest. These delicate translucent berries have been a source of food for generations of Northwest natives, animals and people alike. (read more)

Medicinal Uses of Elderberry Plants
Blue and red elderberry plants have been used for generations by the native people of the Pacific Northwest as both powerful medicine and vitamin-packed food supplements. (read more)

Wild Strawberry Plants: The Sweetest Little Gift of the Forest
Though smaller than the cultivated garden varieties, their flavor and sweetness is unmatched. Wild strawberries are rich in vitamins A and C, as well as high in iron, potassium and calcium. (read more)

Five Temperate Rainforest Plants to Know in the Pacific Northwest
Temperate rainforest plants used for medicine, food, or made into tools. The following wild plants are some of the most useful species in the Pacific Northwest. (read more)

List of Medicinal Plants in the Temperate Rainforest
A thorough listing of wild plants used for medicine found on the west side of the Cascade Mountains and nearby habitats of the Pacific Northwest. (read more)

Identifying Wild Mushrooms
There is nothing quite like the feeling of coming upon a strange and wonderful mushroom on a walk or wander! For many of us the next step is mushroom identification. (read more)

Medicinal Herb Gardening Using Permaculture Techniques
Medicinal herb gardening is a wonderful way to begin incorporating permaculture into your life. Growing plants used for medicine allows you experiment with small-scale sustainable gardening. (read more)

List of Deer Resistant Plants
When working with nature in gardening or landscaping it is often helpful to know which plants to consider when deer are a potential concern. Deer can eat a variety. (read more)

Edible Weeds: A Different Perspective
Everywhere you walk, you are probably surrounded by wild edible weeds. These plants likely have among them some great edible as well as medicinal species. It is truly amazing. (read more)

Blackberry Plants : One of the Tastiest Wild Fruits
One of the tastiest of all wild fruits grows on the vines of blackberry plants. It is a well-known and well loved plant found throughout the United States. Humans have. (read more)

Fiddlehead Ferns
Of all the wild edible plants, fiddlehead ferns are some of the most unique and flavorful. Fiddleheads are the unfurled new leaves of a fern. They vary in size, shape and palatability from. (read more)

Edible Berries
The most delicious treats to be found foraging in the wild, edible berries are a delight to find and to eat! There is a wealth of wild edible berries throughout North America, and a great number of them grow. (read more).

Edible Wild Mushrooms
Do you want to learn how to find and identify edible wild mushrooms? Learning about edible wild mushrooms can seem like an overwhelming process, but don’t get discouraged. (read more).

Poisonous Mushrooms
Some poisonous mushrooms can kill you! It is essential to learn to identify the poisonous mushrooms properly and avoid them carefully. The good news is that. (read more)

Types of Evergreen Trees
How can you tell the different types of evergreen trees apart and which ones are your best allies in a survival situation? Where are they found and what do they look like. (read more)

Tree Identification
Do you need help with tree identification? Tree identification is most easily done if you look at the parts of a tree in front of you, and using them, look up the tree in a . (read more)

Tincture Recipes: Making Home Remedies
Looking for some great tincture recipes to help you heal and stay healthy? For starters, tincture is typically an alcoholic extract of plants used for medicine. (read more).

Plant Identification: A Practical Approach
Plant identification in the field can be a challenge. Learn about a simple, straightforward system for identifying plants used at many of Alderleaf's courses. (read more)

Herbal Cold Remedy from Wild Plants
Learn how to make your own herbal cold remedy from wild harvested local plants used for medicine. Cedar fronds combined with roots or inner bark of the Oregon grape make a powerful herbal cold remedy. (read more)

Floating Pond Plants: For Habitat, Food and Beauty
Learn what plants to bring to your ponds for food, beauty and wildlife habitat. Unlike emergent pond plants the floating pond plants, serve a completely different and yet necessary role in your pond. (read more)

Types of Mushrooms: For Medicine and Permaculture
Mushrooms are a rich source of both foods and medicines. Read about what mushrooms you can use as medicine and the enhance your garden or other permaculture projects. (read more)

Water Hemlock: A Deadly Poisonous Plant
When you begin learning about wild plants, a great place to start is with the most dangerous species found in your area. Learn to recognizes and how to avoid this highly toxic member of the Carrot family. (read more)

Antifungal Herbs: Healing Allies
A variety of truly wonderful antifungal herbs are used by herbalists to help treat different ailments. (read more)

How to Grow Blueberries
Learning how to grow blueberries is simple and they can provide a unique addition to our diet. (read more)

Herbs for Allergies: Common Allies
Utilizing herbs for allergies can be an effective way to lessen and to treat allergic symptoms. (read more)

Plants in the Desert: Living Survival Aids
There are many plants in the desert that can serve as vital aids in wilderness survival. Some serve as a source of food, some as material for shelters and others serve as the perfect material for friction fires. (read more)

Pacific Northwest Trees
Pacific northwest trees are one of the most important resources to survival, providing firewood, shelter, tools, food, medicine, wildlife habitat, and so much more to the ecosystem. (read more)

Urban Foraging: Eat Your Weeds
The practice of urban foraging can help benefit you and your family during times of emergency. (read more)

Natural Cold Remedies
Here's the recipe for one of our favorite natural cold remedies that uses ingredients found in your kitchen and backyard. (read more)

Chantrelle Mushrooms: Gifts of the Forest
Chantrelle mushrooms – which are also called “chanterelles” – are one of the most harvested and most widely enjoyed wild mushrooms in the world. (read more)

How to Make a Tincture
Learning how to make a tinctures is a great way to preserve and use medicinal plants, however they do not replace the nourishment you gain from eating wild foods. (read more)

How to Make Cottonwood Salve
Cottonwood salve is an amazing medicine made of natural ingredients, read more to learn how to make it. (read more)

Antiviral Herbs
Are you familiar with any antiviral herbs? You’ve probably heard the terms antiviral, antibacterial and antimicrobial. Learn more hear about antiviral herbs. (read more)

Nettle Infusions
Do you know the health benefits of using nettle infusions? Nutritionally speaking, nettle infusions are high in iron, potassium, calcium, manganese and vitamins A, C and D. (read more)

Wild Edible Greens
Some of the most delicious wild foods are wild edible greens. These wild foods are typically more strongly flavored and far more nutritious for us than their domestic counterparts. (read more)

Foraging for Wild Edibles
Have you ever been curious about foraging for wild edibles? There are many ways to go about it, and some are certainly more effective and enjoyable than others. (read more)

Edible Wildflowers: Identification, Harvesting, Examples, & Cautions
Spring and summer provide us with the opportunity to build an in-depth relationship with the various plant communities in our respective bioregions. (read more)

Lobster Mushroom
This mushroom might be one of the strangest organisms people like to eat! This bizarre fungus goes by the Latin name Hypomyces lactifluorum, and earns its name from its scent and flavor. (read more)

Edible Seaweeds
Edible Seaweeds are one of the sensory delights of the living seashore.  With their fantastic shapes, colors and tastes they are quite an experience for the adventurous palate and a valuable survival food. (read more)

Morel Mushrooms
Morel mushrooms are an elusive, exciting and distinctly delicious group of wild mushrooms. Learn to identify the choice edibles from the potentially deadly toxic look-alikes. (read more)

King Bolete
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Cattail Plants - Friend of the Forager, Bushcrafter, and Basket-Maker
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Stinging Nettle Plants
Most people in the Pacific Northwest are familiar with stinging nettle (Urtica dioica). Nettle has a long history of human use as fiber, food, and medicine and figures prominently in both. (read more)

Common Burdock
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Medicinal Plants List
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Nettle for Hair
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How to Make Maple Syrup
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Common Camas
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How to Dry Herbs
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Wild Mushroom Recipes
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Birch Beer Recipe
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Stinging Nettle Pesto Recipe
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Salad made from wild flowers and greens

Additional Resources on Plants Used for Medicine and Food:

Knowledge is Power - Grow Your Wilderness Skills!  Get monthly updates on new wilderness skills articles, upcoming courses, and special opportunities. Join the free Alderleaf eNewsletterਊnd as a bonus you'll get our mini survival guide:

Alderleaf Wilderness College: Nature & Wilderness Survival School
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Cannabis Tincture, Salve, Butter and Oil Recipes

The following recipes come from the Vancouver Island Compassion Society ( Please note that not all state medical cannabis laws allow for cannabis concentrates. Where they do not, manufacture or possession of these substances usually carries serious penalties. Be sure to check the legal guidelines for your state.

VICS Cannamist/Tincture

Recipe and Instructions on How to Convert THCA Into THC

A tincture is an alcohol-based solution of a non-volatile medicine (in this case cannabis). In a cannabis tincture, alcohol is not only the solvent used to separate cannabinoids from the plant matter, it is what makes this type of application (particularly in fine-mist form) more bio-available and therefore effective.

In whole-plant cannabis, THC content is expressed as THCA (tetrahydrocannabolic acid) prior to decarboxilation into THC, which takes place when cannabis is heated during cooking, smoking or vaporized ingestion. THCA is a mild analgesic and anti-inflammatory but in order to make a THC-rich tincture that has many of the same therapeutic effects as smoked ingestion (including rapid absorption, quick relief and ease of self-titration), we must convert the THCA in the plant matter into THC prior to extracting it through an alcohol soak.


  1. Converted cannabis
  2. Alcohol (50% is preferred, but 40% vodka works just fine)
  3. Organic mint
  4. Organic honey
  5. Large mason jar, x 2
  6. Cheesecloth or fine mesh sieve

Dry heat conversion of THCA into THC

  1. Preheat oven to exactly 325°F (160°C). Use an oven thermometer to be sure.
  2. Spread leaf or bud in a 1 inch (2.5 cm) layer on a clean cookie sheet.
  3. Put in the oven until the first hint of smoke or 5 minutes, whichever is first remove and transfer to a glass or ceramic container to cool.

Tincture/Cannamist Recipe:

  1. Pack a mason jar loosely but completely with converted cannabis product.
  2. Add alcohol until the jar is full.
  3. Seal, shake and put in a dark, cool place.
  4. After week one, strain mixture through cheesecloth or fine mesh sieve and add to another mason jar packed with converted cannabis and a few sprigs of fresh organic mint.
  5. After week two, strain through cheesecloth or fine mesh into mason jar.
  6. Add organic honey to taste.
  7. Shake/mix and then decant into bottles fitted with fine mist spray tops.


Initial Dosage: Spray two times on the inside of the cheek, and wait 30 seconds before swallowing. Wait ten minutes. If desired effect has not been reached, repeat on the opposite cheek. Wait ten minutes.Repeat until desired effect is achieved. Dosage will vary between users, but should remain fairly constant once established.

Effect will last for between 1-2 hours. Repeat use as needed. If you feel dizzy or disoriented, immediately discontinue use. Do not operate heavy machinery or drive during use of this product.

The VICS Cannabis Oil Recipe

Makes about 2 Liters of oil.


  1. 200 to 250 grams good quality organic cannabis shake (trim)
  2. Slow cooker
  3. Cheese cloth
  4. Silkscreen, min. 200+ thread count per inch
  5. 3 Liters Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  6. Colander or strainer


  1. Put cannabis into slow cooker
  2. Add olive oil until it just covers the cannabis.
  3. Turn slow cooker to High for 2 hours, and then turn down to Low for an additional 4 to 6 hours, stirring occasionally.
  4. To make a stronger product, add fresh cannabis to the previously heated oil left in the slow cooker and top up oil to cover the cannabis keep cooking on low heat overnight or up to two days.
  5. Strain oil, as warm as possible, through cheese cloth, then strain through silkscreen. The oil is ready to use as is. It will keep for up to 3 months.
  6. Cannabis oil can be quite potent and have a very narcotic effect. It is recommended that you do not drive or perform difficult tasks after consumption.

The VICS Salve Recipe

This recipe yields roughly 525 ml of topical salve vary ingredients proportionately for a smaller or larger batch.


  1. 400 ml Cannaoil (converted cannabis and olive oil - see our Cannaoil recipe)
  2. 40 grams shaved beeswax
  3. 45 drops lavender oil
  4. 30 drops mint oil
  5. 1/2 tsp. of honey


  1. Combine Cannaoil and beeswax in a small crockpot, or a small double boiler put on low heat, no higher than 150oF (65oC).
  2. Stir constantly until all the beeswax is melted.
  3. Add lavender and mint oil to the Cannaoil/beeswax. Stir to blend oils. Allow to sit for a few minutes.
  4. Keeping the crockpot, or double boiler, on very low heat, pour the salve into container(s) stir the mix prior to pouring in order to maintain consistency.
  5. Let salve cool completely before putting lid(s) on.
  6. Benefits: Fast skin absorption with minimal residual effect. Eases dry skin conditions. Provides mild pain relief for muscular and/or joint pain.

The VICS Cannabutter Recipe


  1. Good quality organic cannabis (14 grams of bud or 76 grams of shake (trim) per 454 grams (1 lb.) of butter)
  2. 6 to 8 Litre (1.5 gallon) capacity boiling pot
  3. Fine mesh strainer, or colander, or large coffee filter, or nylon stockings
  4. Large refrigerator-safe pot


  1. Fill a 6 to 8 litre pot with cold water and bring to boil.
  2. Add butter and cannabis.
  3. Mix.
  4. Lower heat and simmer for 2 to 3 hours, stirring occasionally (add water if necessary).
  5. Strain out liquid into refrigerator-safe bowl using fine strainer, large coffee filter or nylon stocking. Squeeze butter out of remaining leaf (wear gloves, the leaf is hot!).
  6. Discard strained leaf.
  7. Let liquid cool, and then put into refrigerator overnight. Butter will separate from water and form a hard crust on surface of liquid.
  8. Lift out butter crust and put into large mixing bowl. Cream and fold butter using a large metal or wooden spoon. Discard remaining liquid.

Butter is ready to use as is. It will keep in freezer up to 3 months. When baking with cannabutter, select recipes such as cookies with short, low-heat cooking instructions (below 163 degrees C or 325 degrees F) At higher temperatures, the cannabinoids in the butter will break down and be lost while cooking.

Products baked with cannabutter take effect within 30 to 90 minutes from initial ingestion and can last for several hours. For maximum effect, ingest on an empty stomach. Cannabutter can be quite potent and have a strong narcotic effect. It is recommended that you not drive or perform difficult tasks after ingesting.


Passionflower’s floral arrangement is so unique that early Christian missionaries decided to capitalize on its distinctive morphology, and use it as an educational tool in describing Christ’s crucifixion. The name describes the passion of Christ and his disciples, although in addition, it does excite passion in laboratory mice, who have demonstrated increased mounting of non-estrus females. But alas, we digress from botany. The flowers have the standard sepals and petals additionally they have a third floral whorl, the corona. Passionflower’s corona resembles purple and white striped threads, which vary depending on the variety or cultivar. As the flower opens these corona threads emerge in a beautiful crimped pattern (as seen in many of the photos in this article).

Passionflower corona close-up

Above the corona rises the androgynophore (translates to male-female-bearing), which is the shared female and male reproductive structure. Rising above the short stalk, there are the five stamens (male, bearing pollen). Above the stamens rests the pistil, which is the female part of the flower the pistil is comprised of three parts: the ovary, resembling a green ball, giving rise to the three styles and stigmas (female).

Passionflower has an interesting floral reproductive strategy: on any given plant, some flowers will be functionally bisexual (with fertile male and female parts), and some plants will be functionally male (with both male and female parts present, but only the male is functioning reproductively).[i] The term for this strategy of bearing both bisexual flowers and male flowers on the same plant is andromonoecy. The functionally bisexual flowers have styles, which recurve, bending down close to the stamens, so the pollinator can easily brush up against both the stamen and the stigma as it nestles its way into the nectar, produced at the base of the corona. (See the picture below for a view of passionflower pollination in action in a functionally bisexual flower. Those with prudish or tender constitutions may want to scroll quickly past this photo, as it is a tad racy.)

Many other plants have this built in gender flexibility, thus having the ability to decrease fruit production by having fewer bisexual flowers, and more male-only flowers, that can pollinate but not set fruit, when resources are lean. Passionflower has the added bonus of being able to spread vegetatively through its bountiful runners, and thus skip or reduce the more expensive sexual reproduction when appropriate. I bet many humans wish they had this kind of reproductive flexibility!


Opportunities to take action and support your organization, communities, and families you serve.

A petition demanding Congress provides safeguards for Black immigrants in the next Covid-19 stimulus bill.

A news digest and analysis about the pandemic’s disproportionate impact on people of color and strategies for a just, fair and inclusive recovery from PolicyLink.

A set of best practices and recommendations outlined for the California Department of Education to retool the state’s education system.

A letter calling on Governor Newsom and the California state legislature to ensure a long-term safety net for undocumented Californians who are laid off and left out of unemployment coverage as a result of Covid-19.

A piece from Giving Compass describing five ways for donors can strengthen communities and reimagine systems for a more just world.

A list of demands from ColorofChange for federal, state and local officials to protect incarcerated individuals from further spread of Covid-19.

A column from Center for American Progress with recommendations for how police agencies can safely modify their practices to prevent the further spread of Covid-19.

Crisis Text Line tips for how to handle the pandemic in the following areas: how to deal with isolation, for students, for parents, for financial stress and for healthcare workers.

A letter from The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and other organizations urging Congress to provide a low-income broadband benefit in the next Phase 4 Covid-19 package.

A set of letters to Governors in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia and Missouri requesting water service restoration to previously disconnected customers and statewide moratoriums on water shutoffs.

An op-ed from the editors of the Nonprofit Quarterly about leveraging policy openings created by Covid-19.

A list of mutual aid projects and groups from across the country.

Five ways to fight for the lives of those incarcerated during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Black communities are disproportionately impacted by Covid-19 and the NAACP Is providing resources and policy information about that impact, including equity implications.

Several sets of instructions for making DIY cloth face masks.

A toolkit created by Right to the City Alliance to help folks conduct a rent strike in an organized and powerful way.

A set of resources focusing on racial equity and social justice to support communities and activists as they respond to the crisis. It includes information in the following categories: analysis, resources and tools, community care, organizing, resource building and virtual work.

A running list of recent and ongoing strikes of workers demanding improvements from more masks and hand sanitizer to better protections for seasonal employees.

An open letter to elected officials by Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition.

A piece discussing what comes next for cities after Covid-19, especially in the areas of transportation, large-scale infrastructure and local economies.

An example of an ordinance adopted by the LA City Council related to rent and evictions during the Covid-19 Pandemic.

An example of an ordinance adopted by the LA City Council for paid sick leave for those uncovered by the federal policy.

Frequently Asked Questions for workers during the pandemic about worker’s legal rights.

A policy platform from Workers Defense Project demanding that the government protect all communities, regardless of immigration status, criminal background, work history or employment status.

A set of policies that would help people with disabilities during the Covid-19 pandemic from the Center for American Progress.

A letter to ICE Field Office in San Antonio urging ICE to use its discretion to order the immediate release of all immigrants detained in the Rio Grande Valley to their families and communities.

A letter from more than 400 former prosecutors, lawyers and judges urging President Trump to release vulnerable people from custody in light of Covid-19.

A letter to the Federal Communications Commission requesting it provide emergency support for the Lifeline program, which helps low-income consumers afford essential communications services.

A letter to Secretary of Labor Scalia with implementation questions/concerns regarding Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act and Medical Leave Expansion Act in the recently enacted Families First Coronavirus Response Act.

A summary of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) describing key provisions in the Senate bill in the following areas: individuals, employers, businesses, hospitals and health care, financial institutions, food and drug, housing and real estate, education, transportation, tax and disaster relief

The Opportunity Agenda wrote a memo laying out a foundation for communicating about the importance of paid and family medical leave policies for all families.

The Council of Nonprofits is requesting resources through the Federal Economic Stimulus Package to support the nonprofit sector.

The Shriver Center on Poverty Law has collected several law/policy changes and budget allocations at the federal, state and local levels that will support vulnerable individuals and families and moves toward systemic change.

Common Mushrooms

Weil is less enthusiastic about white, or button, mushrooms, a species of mushroom that also includes Portobellos and criminis.

“Button mushrooms do possess some health benefits, but not the general health benefits found in Asian mushrooms,” Weil says.

Weil also says that these commonly available mushrooms contain natural substances called agaritines, which studies show may increase the risk of tumors in animals.

It’s important to keep in mind that mushrooms are not the only food to contain small amounts of potential carcinogens, or cancer-causing substances. For example, acrylamides, which form when certain foods are cooked at high temperature, have caused tumors in mice and rats. They are found in French fries.

Although there’s no conclusive evidence that agaritines found in mushrooms are harmful to people, Weil likes to play it safe. He advises people to avoid eating large quantities of them.


“All told, it is OK to eat button mushrooms in moderation,” Weil says, “but they should always be thoroughly cooked -- broiled or grilled is best.”


Cooking may break down some of the naturally occurring toxins, he says. In fact, Weil advises against eating any mushrooms - wild or cultivated - raw.

Mushrooms offer so much that is good for you, says New York dietician Marjorie Nolan, MS, RD. They are a good source of protein as well as antioxidants such as selenium, which helps to prevent cell damage, and copper, a mineral that aids in the production of red blood cells. In fact, mushrooms are the only produce that contains significant amounts of selenium.

For those who don't like bananas, consider the Portobello mushroom. It has more potassium and fewer calories, says Nolan, a spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association. Criminis are particularly high in vitamin B12, which is good news for vegetarians, Nolan says, because that's a vitamin more often found in animal products. In general, mushrooms are a decent source of B vitamins. They are also cholesterol free and very low in fat.

White mushrooms are also an increasingly good source of vitamin D because growers are exposing their crops to small amounts of ultraviolet light, which increases their D content dramatically, Nolan says.


"They are good for low levels of vitamin D, which is almost epidemic," Nolan says. "I happen to love mushrooms. they are not at the top of the list of superfoods, but they should be."

Again, it is important that you cook mushrooms thoroughly, and not simply in order to break down small amounts of natural toxins.

"The cell walls of mushrooms are tough, making it difficult for the digestive system to get to all the nutrients inside them," Weil writes. "Mushrooms often contain chemical compounds that can interfere with digestion and nutrient absorption -- sufficient cooking breaks down the tough cell walls, inactivates the anti-digestive elements, and destroys many toxins. It also makes mushrooms taste much better."

Roots and Shoots

You'll be making huge strides in your food gathering if you gather shoots and even more so roots. Roots are amazing foods stored underground just waiting for you whenever you are hungry. Yes, there are optimal harvest times but generally speaking, as far as survival goes, there are some roots you can gather year round unless the ground freezes. Shoots are an excellent immediate food source and can often be eaten raw.

  1. Water lily roots
  2. Burdock root
  3. Thistle root
  4. Taro root
  5. Jerusalem artichoke root
  6. Cattail roots and shoots
  7. Watercress shoots
  8. Bamboo shoots
  9. Larch and Hemlock shoots/tips

For Parents, There Is a Lot to Love in Joe Biden’s COVID-19 Stimulus Plan

Up until now, the relief many of us have felt about the incoming Biden administration and a Democratic congress was mostly abstract. We were excited about a return to stability and an absence of racists and xenophobes at the top. But when President-Elect Joe Biden spoke about his $1.9 billion proposed American Rescue Plan on Thursday, that relief started to look even more concrete &mdash especially for parents who have been struggling throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We will move Heaven and Earth to get more people vaccinated, to create more places for them to get vaccinated, to mobilize more medical teams to get shots in peoples&rsquo arms, and to increase vaccine supply and get it out the door as fast as possible,” Biden said on Thursday. “We will also do everything we can to keep our educators and students safe and to safely open a majority of our K-8 schools by the end of our first 100 days. We can do it, if we give school districts, communities, and states the clear guidance they need as well as the resources they will need that they cannot afford right now because of the economic crisis we are in. That means more testing and transportation, additional cleaning and sanitizing services, protective equipment, and ventilation systems in the schools.”

Since we first started discussing how and when kids would return to school and daycare amid the pandemic, money has been a huge factor. Schools needed more funds to upgrade ventilation systems, provide masks and cleaning supplies to teachers and staff, and distribute laptops or tablets to students. They also needed to hire enough teachers to offer both remote learning and in-person learning with smaller, socially distanced classes. Meanwhile, shutdowns meant that states and cities were collecting less tax revenue, so school district budgets were shrinking just when they should be growing.

Last fall, when SheKnows and Rolling Stone held a roundtable with educators about returning to school, everyone said that money would be the key to giving children a safe, equitable education in the COVID reality.

&ldquoI think that it&rsquos going to be an incredibly challenging thing to come back from this,&rdquo Lynette Guastaferro, chief executive officer of the nonprofit Teaching Matters, told us. “And it&rsquos going to require persistence, and double the effort and resources &mdash way more resources put into education to address this in the next few years.&rdquo

We don’t even need to remind you what was going on for parents in the meantime, as those of us who can work from home and care for our children count ourselves as lucky, compared to those who lost their jobs or had to go to find some safe place to send their children so they could go to in-person workplaces.

Biden’s plan isn’t going to make all those troubles disappear on January 21. But here’s how it may provide real relief to parents, caregivers, and teachers if Congress can pass it:

By providing an additional $130 billion to schools. Some of that will go toward the aforementioned needs. Some of it is designed to increase testing efforts. There is also a plan for a COVID-19 Educational Equity Challenge Grant, “which will support state, local and tribal governments in partnering with teachers, parents, and other stakeholders to advance equity- and evidence-based policies to respond to COVID-related educational challenges and give all students the support they need to succeed,” the transition team said in a release, according to Education Week. That means the lower-income and special-needs students who have been left behind for the past year might have a chance to catch up. This is what happens when we get a teacher as first lady.

By giving parents an increased child tax credit. The current tax credit for parents is capped at $2,000 for children under 17. Biden wants that increased to $3,600 for children under 6, and $3,000 for children 6-17. That amount would also be refundable for parents who don’t earn enough to pay that much in taxes.

By giving parents an increased childcare tax credit for one year. Families that make $125,000 or less with children 13 or under would get a credit of up to $4,000 for childcare spending for one child, $8,000 for two or more children.

By providing $40 billion to help childcare providers. That’s $25 billion for a new emergency fund to help providers, including home daycares, stay in business plus an additional $15 billion for the existing Child Care Development Block Grant, which helps low-income families pay for childcare.

By expanding and extending paid family leave. The plan reinstates the CARES Act paid leave that expired in December. It also expands eligibility for that leave to people who work for companies with 500 more employees and federal workers. In addition, anyone whose child’s school or daycare is closed due to COVID can get 14 days of paid leave.

By increasing funding to state and local governments. With $350 billion more in funding, those governments can fill in the school budget gaps left by falling tax revenue, and then continue to do other things that help the community, such as increased testing and tracing.

By putting more money in people’s pockets. The additional $1,400 in proposed checks to individuals and $400 in weekly unemployment benefits will go a long way toward helping parent make ends meet if they’ve lost income and/or jobs in the past year. Even if you haven’t, the whole economy will get a boost when those in need get more spending power.

Will all of this happen? Probably not exactly as outlined. But if it looks good to you, get on that phone or find the email addresses of your representatives and senators ASAP.

While schools keep opening and closing, here are some ways to keep your kids occupied at home.

The Best Herbs for Pain Relief

A few years ago, I had the pleasure of visiting the home of a gracious woman who deals in antiques. As I admired the many fine pieces displayed there, I came to realize that I, too, am something of a period piece&mdasha baby boomer who&rsquos fundamentally sound but sporting the odd creaky hinge or two.
Fortunately, the herbal apothecary holds promise. Its medicines are good alternatives to nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for chronic, mild to moderate aches and can reduce the need for prescription drugs.

More than 100 plants are known to have pain-relieving properties, but some are really outstanding. Reporting on herbal painkillers for arthritis, a review of clinical trials in the Clinical Journal of Pain says devil&rsquos claw (Harpagophytum procumbens), capsaicin from hot chiles (Capsicum spp.), gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) from seed oils, and certain blended herbal extracts are especially good. Other studies indicate broader pain-relieving benefits from these as well as two traditional favorites, white willow (Salix spp.) and peppermint (Mentha piperita).

Herbal Rx: Devil&rsquos Claw and Capsaicin

Devil&rsquos claw is a South African herb with medicinally active roots. This herb eases muscular tension or pain in the back, shoulders and neck. A popular treatment for osteoarthritic pain, it may ease rheumatoid arthritic pain as well. The herb&rsquos active ingredients are harpagide and harpagoside, both iridoid glycosides with analgesic (pain-relieving) and anti-inflammatory actions. Devil&rsquos claw extract has been shown to reduce osteoarthritic hip or knee pain by 25 percent and improve mobility within a few weeks. Rheumatoid arthritic pain may also be reduced and mobility enhanced within about two months. Devil&rsquos claw extract is considered safe at the typical dosage of 750 mg (containing 3 percent iridoid glycosides) taken three times daily. It is also available as tincture (use 1 teaspoon up to three times daily) and tea. It should not be taken with blood-thinning medications and may not be safe during pregnancy or for young children, nursing mothers and individuals with liver or kidney disease, or digestive system ulcers.

Capsaicin puts the heat in hot peppers. It manipulates the body&rsquos pain status by hindering pain perception, triggering the release of pain-relieving endorphins and providing analgesic action. Commercial capsaicin-containing creams such as Zostrix, Heet and Capzasin-P are used topically for arthritic and nerve pain. Creams containing .025 percent capsaicin can significantly reduce osteoarthritic pain when applied to joints four times daily. A higher concentration of .075 percent works best for peripheral nerve pain&mdashsuch as that from diabetic nerve damage, HIV and pain following cancer surgery. When using topical capsaicin products, be sure to avoid touching your eyes and other sensitive areas.

Capsaicin also can be taken internally to help with chronic digestive discomfort, or dyspepsia: A daily dose of 0.5 to 1 grams cayenne, divided and taken before meals, reduces pain, bloating and nausea over a few weeks. If you like to munch hot peppers, rest assured that they do not aggravate stomach ulcers as is commonly believed, and they actually might protect your stomach from prescription-drug damage.

Healthy Oils Help Relieve Aches and Pains

Gamma-linolenic acid is one of the good fats. It may help the body produce the kinds of prostaglandins and leukotrienes (hormone-like substances that influence the immune system and many other processes) that can reduce inflammation. It curbs rheumatoid arthritic pain, relieving morning stiffness and joint tenderness. Some evidence indicates that GLA also can help migraine headaches and mild diabetic nerve damage. Borage (Borago officinalis) and black currant (Ribes nigrum) seed oils are the richest sources of GLA, containing up to 25 percent and 20 percent, respectively, while evening primrose (Oenothera biennis), a traditional source, delivers 7 percent to 10 percent. The recommended daily dose for rheumatoid arthritis is 1 to 3 grams GLA supplement, and for mild diabetic neuropathy 400 to 600 mg daily. GLA is not an overnight fix and may take up to six months for significant relief. Also, long-term use may lead to inflammation, blood clots or decreased immune system functioning. A safe route to introduce a little GLA into your diet is by eating a handful of black currants regularly or spreading the preserves onto your morning toast&mdashyou might as well enjoy your medicine!

More Pain-relieving Herbs

To complete your anti-pain arsenal, consider these herbs:
&bull Arnica (Arnica spp.), available in creams and tablets,relieves osteoarthritic pain in the knee and pain following carpal-tunnel release surgery. It contains helenin, an analgesic, as well as anti-inflammatory chemicals. Apply cream twice daily use tablets according to package directions.
&bull Boswellia (Boswellia serrata) contains anti-inflammatory and analgesic boswellic acids that can soothe pain from sports injuries and also can help osteoarthritic knee pain. Take 150- to 400-mg capsules or tablets (standardized to contain 30 percent to 65 percent boswellic acids) three times daily for two to three months.
&bull Clove oil (Syzygium aromaticum) is a popular home remedy for a toothache. Apply a drop or two of this excellent anti-inflammatory directly to your aching tooth or tooth cavity.
&bull Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) seeds are stocked with 16 analgesic and 27 antispasmodic chemicals. It makes a pleasant licorice-flavored tea and is especially good for menstrual cramps. But avoid the herb while pregnant or nursing because of its estrogenic effects.
&bull Feverfew (Tanacetum parthenium) is a remedy many people swear by for headaches, including migraines. Feverfew can reduce both the frequency and severity of headaches when taken regularly. It is available in 60-mg capsules of fresh, powdered leaf (1 to 6 capsules daily), or 25-mg capsules of freeze-dried leaf (2 capsules daily). You can also make tea&mdashsteep 2 to 8 fresh leaves in boiling water, but do not boil them, since boiling breaks down the active parthenolides.
&bull Gingerroot (Zingiber officinale) has analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties that can alleviate digestive cramps and mild pain from fibromyalgia. You can take 1 to 4 grams powdered ginger daily, divided into two to four doses. Or make tea from 1 teaspoon chopped fresh root simmered in a cup of water for about 10 minutes.
&bull Green tea (Camellia sinensis) is great for stiff muscles&mdashit has nine muscle-relaxing compounds, more than just about any other plant.
&bull Licorice root (Glycyrrhiza glabra) is recommended by the German Commission E for sore throat. Not surprising, considering its nine anesthetic, 10 analgesic and 20 anti-inflammatory compounds. To make tea, simmer about 2 teaspoons of dried root in a cup of water for 15 minutes strain. Do not take licorice if you have high blood pressure, heart conditions, diabetes, kidney disease or glaucoma.
&bull Oregano (Origanum vulgare ssp. hirtum), rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) and thyme (Thymus vulgaris) are herbs you should be sprinkling liberally onto your food, as they are replete with analgesic, antispasmodic and anti-inflammatory compounds. (Oregano alone has 32 anti-inflammatories!) Mix and match these garden herbs into a pain-relieving tea: Pour a cup of boiling water over a teaspoon of dried herbs, steep 5 to 10 minutes and strain.

Aromatherapy: Experience the Sweet Smell of Pain Relief

Ever thought of using your nose to help ease your pain? Volatiles in essential oils can easily enter your body via your olfactory system and adjust brain electrical activity to alter your perception of pain. Clinical aromatherapists commonly use lavender, peppermint, chamomile, and damask rose for pain relief and relaxation. A report from Nursing Clinics of North America says that massage with lavender relieves pain and enhances the effect of orthodox pain medication. Lavender and chamomile oils are gentle enough to be used with children and, in blends, have relieved children&rsquos pain from HIV, encephalopathy-induced muscle spasm and nerve pain. Both oils contain anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic chemicals, and exert sedative, calming action. Rose essential oil contains pain-reducing eugenol, cinnamaldehyde and geraniol but the report&rsquos author suggests it may also alter perception of pain because it embodies the soothing aromas of the garden.

Time-tested Herbal Aids

White willow bark is one of the oldest home analgesics, dating back to 500 b.c. in China. Modern research confirms old-time wisdom, showing it helps back, osteoarthritic and nerve pains. Willow bark contains apigenin, salicin and salicylic acid, which provide anti-inflammatory, analgesic and anti-neuralgic actions. At the end of a four-week study of 210 individuals suffering from back pain, reported in the American Journal of Medicine in 2000, 39 percent of those who had received 240 mg of salicin daily were essentially pain-free, compared to 6 percent of those given a placebo.

Individuals with osteoarthritis of the knee or hip also are helped. Willow bark can be purchased as standardized extracts and teas. If you have access to white willow and wish to make your own, collect bark from a twig (never the main trunk). Use about 2 teaspoons of bark to a cup of water, boil, simmer for 10 minutes and cool slightly. Because salicin concentration is low and widely variable in willow bark, you may need several cups to obtain the equivalent of two standard aspirin tablets. A word of caution: Willow should not be given to children, due to the risk of Reye&rsquos syndrome, nor used by individuals with aspirin allergies, bleeding disorders, or liver or kidney disease. Willow may interact adversely with blood-thinning medications and other anti-inflammatory drugs. Also, willow tends not to irritate the stomach in the short term, but long-term use can be problematic.

Peppermint is a famous antispasmodic for digestive cramps, while its essential oil is used as a local topical anesthetic in commercial ointments (Solarcaine and Ben-Gay, for example).

Germany&rsquos Commission E authorizes use of oral peppermint oil for treating colicky pain in the digestive tract of adults. However, peppermint oil shouldn&rsquot be used for colic in newborn babies, as it can cause jaundice.

Several double-blind studies of individuals with irritable bowel syndrome demonstrate peppermint can significantly relieve painful abdominal cramps, bloating and flatulence. In the largest study, reported in the Journal of Gastroenterology, researchers administered either enteric-coated peppermint oil or a placebo to 110 individuals three to four times daily, 15 to 30 minutes before meals, for four weeks. The study found peppermint significantly reduced abdominal discomfort.

Take a 0.2- to 0.4-ml enteric-coated peppermint capsule three times daily. (Enteric coating prevents stomach upset.) For mild stomach discomfort, try a tea from fresh or dried peppermint leaves. The menthol in peppermint relaxes the muscles. Its antispasmodic and analgesic effects also can help relieve headaches, possibly including migraines, when applied to the forehead or temples&mdashdilute about 3 drops of essential oil in 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil.

Herbal Blends and Other Old Friends

We&rsquore also hearing more about commercial herbal mixtures for pain relief. Two apparently promising ones are avocado/soybean unsaponifiables and Phytodolor, both from Europe. Avocado/soybean unsaponifiables are a complex mix of sterols, pigments and other substances found in the oils, and initial trials suggest that a daily dose of 300 mg soothes hip and knee osteoarthritic pain by anti-inflammatory actions. Phytodolor, with a 40-year history in Germany, is a liquid extract of European aspen (Populus tremula), European ash (Fraxinus excelsior) and European goldenrod (Solidago virgaurea). The extract helps muscle and joint conditions, including osteoarthritis it contains salicin and other chemicals with anti-inflammatory and possibly antioxidant properties.

Don&rsquot discount the psychological dimensions of pain in everyday aches. For instance, most headaches have psychogenic causes (such as anxiety, depression and stress), rather than vascular causes (dilated or distended blood vessels in the brain). Psychogenic headaches tend to be diffuse, often feeling more like pressure than pain, and often are accompanied by muscular tension. Vascular headaches, including migraines, respond more readily to painkillers, whereas emotionally induced ones might benefit more from herbs with calming or sedative properties, such as lavender (Lavandula angustifolia), chamomile (Matricaria recutita) or valerian (Valeriana officinalis).

It shouldn&rsquot be surprising that pain is multidimensional, and our tools for combating it need to be also. When you&rsquore suffering from creakiness or other discomfort, consider the possible causes&mdashdisease, physical strain, nutrient deficiency, chemical sensitivities, allergies or emotional stress. Then you can access the herbal apothecary effectively and appropriately, to fully restore your well-being.

As Coronavirus Shutters Restaurants Across the Country, a Swell of Support for Workers Rises Up

Here are local and nationwide resources that we hope can provide some relief for laid-off restaurant workers.

Across the country, restaurants and bars are increasingly closing, either by government mandate, as in New York and Nevada, or voluntarily, as social distancing becomes essential to flatten the curve. These closures are obviously brutal not only for restaurant operators and owners, but for the workforce, both front and back of the house, who will be laid off indefinitely. 

In response to the crisis, a slew of programs, grants, and resources𠅏rom grassroots efforts to government relief—have begun to take shape, along with a regularly updated Hospitality Industry Alliance | COVID-19 Facebook group. Check back again as this story will continue to be updated as more resources become available. 

One Fair Wage Offers Cash Assistance

On Monday, March 16, One Fair Wage launched an emergency fund to support tipped workers and service workers affected by the coronavirus and the economic downturn. The organization is raising funds to provide free emergency cash assistance to restaurant workers, delivery drivers, and other tipped and service workers impacted by the crisis.

The organization hopes to be able to give each worker $213, an amount that nods to $2.13, the federal minimum wage for tipped workers. The organization is also calling on Americans to demand the federal government and every state end the sub-minimum wage and adopt One Fair Wage—not just in this crisis, but permanently. 

Eligible workers will be screened in phone interviews with One Fair Wage staff, and any additional unused funds will be spent on tipped-worker organizing and advocacy. The One Fair Wage campaign is a fiscally sponsored project of the Seattle-based Alliance for a Just Society, which is administering the tax-deductible 501(c)3 donations.

Rethink Is Hiring and Giving $40K Grants

Rethink, a New York City-based non-profit working to recover nutritious excess food to provide low or no-cost meals to New York City families in need, has shifted gears to focus on the coronavirus crisis. 

Its newly launched Rethink Restaurant Response Program offers operators and restaurant workers two creative and financially supportive options for help. 

First, it is hiring back of house employees𠅌ulinary team members, facilities team members and food distribution associates—to join its Brooklyn Navy Yard-based culinary center and begin cooking and preparing meals for New Yorkers that will be distributed to its partners like God’s Love and City Harvest, and also at the Rethink Cafe in Fort Greene and at its partner restaurants across the city. 

Those partner restaurants are the second way Rethink is fighting the economic effects of the crisis. Restaurants across the city impacted by the pandemic are encouraged to apply to become a Rethink partner. Each partner restaurant will receive a $40,000 grant to be used to stay afloat—to pay staff or rent, whatever is needed. If selected for the grant, the restaurant will then become a distribution center for food made by Rethink. Rethink’s meals are available for free to any New Yorker or for a suggested donation of $3 and will be served for delivery or grab and go. 𠇎ssentially the restaurants will become distribution arms of Rethink,” explains Executive Director Meg Savage. 

NYC Hospitality Alliance: Policy and Programs

In New York City, where all restaurants and bars must stop serving dine-in guests at 8 p.m. on March 16, and only offer delivery and grab and go, the NYC Hospitality Alliance is keeping restaurants updated on resources. Executive director Andrew Rigie’s regular newsletter includes information on all many of resources and programs including information on Unemployment Insurance Benefits. New York State waived the seven-day waiting period for Unemployment Insurance benefits for people out of work due to coronavirus closures or quarantine. 

It has also established a 12-point policy and mitigation plan for restaurants and will continue to propose policy ideas to address the massive issues this will create. It is also pointing operators to the City of New York&aposs small business agency which is offering services and information to businesses. “We are in this together,” Rigie says.

The Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation 

The Restaurant Worker’s Community Foundation has formed a COVID-19 Crisis Relief Fund for restaurant workers. The organization will focus on supporting 𠇊n industry in crisis,” including both workers and small-business owners. The Fund will provide aid by direct money to those organizations that are doing on-the-ground work, use its impact investing budget to provide zero-interest loans so restaurants can maintain payroll or reopen, and provide relief for individuals facing economic hardship or a health crisis due to coronavirus. The RWCF is also creating a list of resources related to the coronavirus crisis and plans to collect data from workers and restaurant owners who have been affected.

The USBG National Charity Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to advancing the stability and wellbeing of service industry professionals through education and charity, has launched a Bartender Emergency Assistance Program available to any bartender or the spouse or child of a bartender. Applications are being taken now. 

Many ad-hoc groups are also forming to ensure food is diverted to families in need. 

The COVID-19 Food-Hub was organized by the nonprofit Food Education Fund. They are working to create a space to share resources on available food sources for families, collect information on possible food donations, and share resources created by partner organizations.

The Restaurant Closures Community Activation Group, formed by Samantha Unger Katz, Director of Community Engagement for the New York Distilling Company, has launched an online survey to find the best ways to help our communities. “While we know that this is an incredibly challenging and uncertain time, we hope to turn some of our fear and frustration into helping those in need by minimizing food waste and feeding the hungry,” said Unger Katz, who asks that any restaurant planning to suspend operations fill out the form so that food can be salvaged for donation.

Women in Hospitality United 

Women in Hospitality United, formed in the wake of the #MeToo movement, is beginning to compile a list of COVID-related resources and personal stories from the field reflecting the hardships across the industry. 

National Restaurant Association

The National Restaurant Association has a COVID-19 page on its website which directs restaurants to the Small Business Administration, which announced that it will work with state governments to provide targeted, low-interest disaster recovery loans to small businesses severely impacted by the outbreak. You can find out more about these loans and how to access them here.

The Greg Hill Foundation and Samuel Adams

The Greg Hill Foundation and Samuel Adams have teamed up to support Massachusetts restaurant industry workers through the Restaurant Strong Fund, which will provide grants to full-time restaurant workers in Massachusetts. Boston-area chefs Ming Tsai, Ken Oringer, and Chris Coombs have been brought on to partner and advise on the campaign. Sam Adams kicked off the fund with a $100,000 donation, and will be matching donations through March 31 up to an additional $100,000, according to the announcement. The goal is to provide “$1,000 grants to as many qualifying grantees as possible.” 

To qualify for a grant, workers must meet the following qualifications: be a full-time tipped compensated employee (minimum of 30 hours total per week, can be multiple restaurants), employed for three months or longer at the same location, and have worked in a restaurant, bar, cafe, or nightclub in Massachusetts. They must also submit a completed application form and the last two pay stubs received. The application can be accessed on the Greg Hill foundation’s website.

Grassroots Efforts Around the Country

Small scale, community efforts abound from restaurants banding together to support each other, to fundraisers and resource sharing.

In Brooklyn, the owners of One Girl Cookies, Bien Cuit, and Stinky are combining forces to work out the logistics of a delivery program that is coordinated between all of their businesses. 

Ramona, makers of sparkling wine, will be donating $3,734.40, the average monthly salary of a server in New York City, to the Restaurant Worker&aposs COVID-19 Crisis Relief Fund. 𠇊s a small business with our roots in NYC, we feel it’s more important now than ever to support our local hospitality community,” Jordan Salcito, CEO and Founder of Ramona. “We encourage anyone who is able to join us in this effort to consider contributing to this fund.” 

In Chicago, Stock Mfg. and Leisure Activities have launched Chicago Hospitality United, a line of t-shirts to raise funds for Chicago’s food and beverage community. All of the net proceeds from Chicago Hospitality United’s shirts will go directly towards financial relief for hourly employees affected by the necessary precautions Governor Pritzker and Mayor Lightfoot have implemented. 

Tees are priced at $25 each with the option to “leave a tip” for those inclined to give more. Sales will be split evenly amongst participating establishments who will then disseminate directly to their hourly employees.

Participating bars and restaurants include All Together Now, Birrieria Zaragoza, Elske, Scofflaw,Young American and more.

The City of Chicago is offering an Emergency Rental Assistance program, which helps people who have lost their job, had a home fire, or an illness. They provide a one-time grant up to $900 to help cover one month&aposs rental payment. 

In Atlanta, The Giving Kitchen is offering support specifically to restaurant workers diagnosed with COVID-19. The Giving Kitchen provides financial assistance to those in crisis due to COVID-19. Food service workers in Georgia who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 and/or those who are under doctor’s orders for a mandatory quarantine should ask for help. Food service workers experiencing hardship who do not meet these criteria may still be eligible for resource referrals through the Giving Kitchen’s Stability Network. 

Based in Houston, Texas, the Southern Smoke Emergency Relief Fund is fundraising for restaurant relief donations and distributing them to restaurant workers in need. 

Next Gen Chef, a San Francisco-based culinary platform that allows Foodpreneurs to connect with advisors, is providing free access to its community so people can connect, collaborate and innovate. “We’re hoping that by providing access to our community, food entrepreneurs will access mentors, resources and community members to support each other in this time of uncertainty,” said Justine Reichman, Founder and CEO, who adds that they will also be launching online classes for everyone, forums and will continue offering virtual mentor office hours.

The D.C. Virtual Tip Jar is a running list of service workers in the city and their Venmo accounts where generous people can donate extra cash.

Chef Edward Lee is partnering with Makers Mark to create the Restaurant Workers Relief Program. As he wrote in an Instagram post about the initiative, “we will turn 610 Magnolia into a relief center for any restaurant worker who has been laid off.” 

The Gig Workers Collective has a robust list of helpful state-by-state resources.

Free Financial and Legal Advice

The restaurant reservation platform Seated has launched a hotline for restaurant operators to get advice from a team of industry professionals. CohnReznick, the leading finance and accounting advisor to the hospitality industry, and Golenbock Eisman Assor Bell & Peskoe, the leading law firm to the hospitality industry, are lending their services. Restaurant operators in need of advice can visit and submit a question. From there, their questions will be directed to advisors from the firms.

Dining Bonds

A collective of restaurant industry professionals have set a national initiative in motion to get funds into the hands of restaurants, even if they are temporarily closed. A Dining Bond works like a savings bond, where you can purchase a "bond" at a value rate to be redeemed for face value (for example, a $100 bond for $75) at a future date.