UPDATE: Organizers of this campaign are expanding their efforts, thanks to your generosity. Since this story first aired Thursday night, Feed Charlottesville’s Frontline raised an additional $7,000, topping its $20,000 goal. That’s enough to provide every active nurse at the University of Virginia Medical Center with a $50 restaurant gift card. Now, the organizers are raising the goal to $30,000 to give gift cards to nurses at Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital and first responders.
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - A fundraising effort is helping feed nurses on the front line of the coronavirus fight at the University of Virginia while pumping cash into restaurants forced to close by the pandemic.
UVA Children’s Hospital Advisory Board member Natasha Lawler and restaurant marketer Jennifer Eberline are leading the “Feed Charlottesville’s Frontline” fundraiser. Its goal is to raise $20,000. The organizers say that would be enough to provide every active nurse at UVA with a $50 gift card.
“We can’t reach out and hug them, so if there’s any way we can help them it’s to say - hey, have dinner, have one less meal you have to worry about,” Eberline said.
So far, they’ve collected gift cards from more than 30 restaurants around Charlottesville that offer to-go meals. The organizers are trying to buy gift cards from a range of food types and prices to support as many restaurants as they can.
“This is just our way to feel that people feel really moved to thank these nurses and also to give a shout-out to restaurants that - we hope you can pay your rent and keep your lights on so that when this is all over, there’s still a Charlottesville we can all gather in and eat together at,” Lawler said.
Organizers are also encouraging people to create handmade cards showing their appreciation for the nurses.
To donate or drop-off a card, visit the “Feed Charlottesville’s Frontline” GoFundMe page: https://www.gofundme.com/f/feedthefrontline.