Jeffrey Wright Launches Brooklyn For Life
Longtime Fort Greene resident, actor-activist Jeffrey Wright had a modest goal in mind when he set out to support healthcare workers and help some dear friends who own local restaurants during the COVID crisis. When Wright launched the Brooklyn For Life gofundme campaign, he could not have known that it would grow into a nonprofit organization providing thousands of meals each week and extending a lifeline to local restaurants.
So far Brooklyn For Life has raised over $280,000 through their gofundme campaign and is providing over 2500 meals per day from a rotating partnership of more than 42 local restaurants. Wright even enlisted Brooklyn-centric celebrities, including Spike Lee, Lupita Nyong'o, Daniel Craig, Michelle Williams, Mahershala Ali, Jimmy Kimmel, and many more, to create a video to spread the word.
Brooklyn For Life is a certainly an ambitious undertaking, but West-World-star Wright is dedicated to providing "Local Eats for Brooklyn's Frontline Fighters." The Greene Grape is proud to be an Item Donation Sponsor for this grassroots organization. We urge you to support it's vital mission by spreading the word. And, if you can, please donate to Brooklyn For Life today.
In Wright's own words on the Brooklyn For Life website:
This outbreak is touching all of us, whether or not we come in contact with the coronavirus. Of course, on the frontlines of efforts to protect us from this pandemic are the healthcare workers and the first responders. They're feeling pressures right now that most of us are unaware of.
Small businesses, particularly locally-owned restaurants, are facing financial pressures as Brooklyn social distances to slow the spread of COVID-19. They’ve had to lay off workers and revenues have dropped sharply. But many are still rolling by converting their operations to full-time takeout and delivery service.
Brooklyn for Life! was founded to assist both of these efforts.
It started as Operation Pizza, Vito Randazzo, owner of 15-year-old Graziella's Italian Restaurant at 232 Vanderbilt Ave, inviting customers to order pizzas for delivery to the staff at Brooklyn Hospital, then Michael Thompson, owner of 25-yr-old Brooklyn Moon Cafe at 745 Fulton St, joined in offering delivery of his Caribbean/Soul food, all under the guidance of Lenny Singletary, Brooklyn Hospital VP for External Affairs.
We’ve expanded that initial outreach with Brooklyn for Life!, an initiative now managed by Brooklyn NY for Life!, Inc. (a registered 501(c)3 organization, EIN 85-0600127).
Since that initial operation of 200 meals per day to Brooklyn Hospital, we’ve increased our deliveries to over 1500 meals per day provided by a rotating partnership of 32 Brooklyn for Life! restaurants (see the growing list below).
Now, through the support of the office of Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, Brooklyn for Life! is aiming for borough-wide impact.
Our goal is to fund each Brooklyn for Life! restaurant to enable them to provide - at no cost to the recipients - at least 75-100 meals per day for delivery to the Brooklyn frontlines of this pandemic. And with Greene Bites, a bodega directly across the street from Brooklyn Hospital at 116 Dekalb Ave, we're providing a $500 per day allowance, so that anyone walking in with a Brooklyn Hospital ID gets food & drink on the house.
In doing this, we’ll keep Brooklyn's grills & ovens hot to feed our community healthcare warriors and keep some of our vital local small businesses and members of their staff afloat in tough times.
Restaurants are culture in Brooklyn. They’re where we eat, of course. They’re how we stay connected. They’re where we live. 100% of all monies raised (beyond GoFundMe's processing fee) will be used to purchase meals from Brooklyn for Life! partner restaurants on behalf of the men and women on the frontlines.
Get these healthcare workers and first responders some good local eats. Get some revenue flowing to local faves. Lift up our community. It’s who we are.
Stay safe. Broooooooklyn...for life!