YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Simple Greek has answered the call from Founder Marcus Lemonis, best known for his long running hit show CNBC's "The Profit," to battle food insecurity in local communities through his new initiative, Plating Change. Marcus will be connecting with notable friends including Kristen Bell, Alex Rodriguez, and Pharrell Williams amongst others across the country to surprise some of their favorite local restaurants with a large “special order” which will help their local eatery earn sales.
The COVID-19 pandemic has created an unprecedented demand for food assistance and catastrophic impact on small businesses across the country. It is projected that over 50 million people are currently food insecure, over 5.3 million are senior citizens*. As part of the Plating Change program, the 24 Simple Greek franchise locations plan to donate at least 20,000 meals to those in need this holiday season. The Simple Greek is a civic minded organization that recognizes their responsibility to battle food insecurity.
The Plating Change program falls under the newly launched The Lemon-Aid Foundation where Marcus pledged $50M to champion his charitable mission of supporting and investing in underserved communities and small businesses. These investments will be in the form of loans and equity investments and will be designed to have a measurable charitable impact on the communities and businesses being served by the foundation. The foundation also intends to make grants to other charitable organizations that share the same mission and goals. Lemonis intends to apply the same type of rigor that he applies in his own investments to the impact investing of the foundation.
The goal is to deliver sustainable meals to local charities that are accepting prepared foods. Communities can get involved on social media by identifying local organizations who can distribute the meals to those who need it most.
Each locally owned and operated Simple Greek location is donating over 850 nutritious "Bowls of Hope." Customers can join the cause and provide additional meals to people in need by visiting participating Simple Greek locations or online at www.thesimplegreek.com and selecting their nearest location to make a donation. For every $5 donated, one "Bowl of Hope" is dispersed locally to neighbors experiencing food insecurity.
"There is a passion, amongst all of us, to ensure that small businesses feel supported and that people in need have a meal. We are creating a movement where we're giving everyone the opportunity to 'bet on humanity,'" said Lemonis. "That is something we can all feel good about."
*Source: Gundersen, C., M. Hake, A. Dewey, E. Engelhard (2020). The Impact of the Coronavirus on Food Insecurity in 2020, Update October 2020 [Data file and FAQ]. Available from Feeding America: email@example.com.
About The Simple Greek
The Simple Greek was founded in 2015 and serves Greek food made with fresh and imported premium ingredients cooked using authentic family recipes. Using a build-your-own meal in an open-kitchen format, The Simple Greek wants people to Keep Life Simple. For more information, visit thesimplegreek.com.