TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — As business slows down for most restaurants, and waiting rooms fill up, people in Tallahassee decided to do something.
It's a campaign called Hunger to Help, and it's a mission to keep local restaurants in business and feed those on the front lines as COVID-19 makes it's way across the country.
In hospitals, medical workers and volunteers are working day and night to fight virus.
"How can we help local restaurants when their most in need," said Curtis Zimmerman, president of the Zimmerman Agency, "to get people to spend money now?"
The answer to Zimmerman's question is gift cards.
He got the idea while speaking to a local business owner about ways to keep the cash flow even if the restaurant was empty.
"We buy gift cards all year long for employees and we give them out for incentives, or to thank people," said Zimmerman.
The idea is that with "Hunger to Help," people buy gift cards right now, from a variety of restaurants in Tallahassee, to use now, or after the virus has passed.
It wont just help restaurants. Zimmerman Agency partnered with Lester Hutt, who wanted to thank those on the front lines of this pandemic with a First Responder Fund.
In hospitals medical workers and volunteers are working day and night to fight virus.
"For every 10 dollars that's spent, that's a meal that would then be given to a front line volunteer or a medical professional," Hutt said. "As our way of showing thanks to them."
The initiative is getting major support from the community.
"The response has been phenomenal," said Denise Williams, director of Cooperate Associate Development, Capital City Bank. "So far, we've raised enough money to feed about 200 front-line people."
"We're here for you," said Andy Jorshie, director of Advertising, Zimmerman Group. "Hang in there, the community is here for you."
The Hunger to Help campaign officially launched Thursday night.