Team provides nearly 800 meals to those impacted by COVID-19
WINTER PARK, FL (May 15, 2020) - While many businesses have been forced to shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Doug Long and his Amerifirst Home Mortgage team are busier than ever. Since mid-April, they’ve been adopting restaurants in the greater Orlando area to help feed those hit hardest by the coronavirus.
In early April when Florida began social distancing and complying with “stay at home” orders, Long knew he had to do something to help the local economy. As Southeast Division President of Amerifirst and a long-time member of the community, he wanted to share some positivity, show appreciation to essential employees, and support local restaurants, many of whom were his friends.
Since he and his team began their “Adopt-a-Restaurant” initiative, they have provided nearly 800 take-out meals to frontline health care workers, first responders, and most recently to lower-income families who have depended upon school lunches to help feed their children. And in the process, he has provided steady business to four local restaurants who have struggled to keep their staff employed.
Steve Gunter, owner of The TapRoom at Dubsdread, says the financial support he has received through this project means he gets to keep his people working throughout the pandemic. While his restaurant has dropped to about 25% capacity since the pandemic began, he says the Adopt-a-Restaurant project keeps six of his staff working as they stay busy preparing and delivering lunches for 100 people a day, two to three days a week.
“It’s been a moral uplift at a time when we really needed it,” said Gunter. “Being a part of a project where we get to help make a difference in the community just makes everyone feel better.”
Both the Amerifirst and restaurant teams practice social distancing protocols as they deliver and serve food to the recipients. Together, they have provided lunch to the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, multiple Advent Health locations in Central Florida, and community members affiliated with the Neighborhood Center for Families.
“It’s our mission at Amerifirst to make a meaningful difference in the lives of others,” said Long. “We wanted to support our community and show our appreciation to those on the front line who are putting themselves in harm’s way each and every day. And we wanted to do our part to keep our local restaurants alive.”
Gunter describes Long as a community leader with a “very big heart” and says he is grateful to the Amerifirst team. “Knowing Doug has my back has meant a lot to me and my staff,” he said. “I don’t feel so alone.”
5/21/20 Will deliver 75 meals to a community with Neighborhood Center for Families.
5/11/20 Delivered 100 meals to AdventHealth Orlando.
5/07/20 Delivered 100 meals to a local neighborhood community.
5/06/20 Delivered 100 meals to AdventHealth Altamonte for National Nurses Day.
4/30/20 Delivered 100 meals to the Orange County Sheriff's Office.
4/22/20 Delivered 100 lunches to Advent Health – Winter Park.
4/20/20 Delivered 100 meals to the Orange County Sheriff’s Office.
4/01/20 Delivered 150 meals to friends and families of Amerifirst
About Amerifirst Home Mortgage
Amerifirst Home Mortgage employs over 700 team members and provides home financing opportunities for thousands of individuals and families each year, especially in rural and underserved communities and among first-time homebuyers. With nearly 20 branch offices in the State of Florida, it also operates in branches across a dozen states throughout the U.S. and is recognized by Inc. 5000 for its 78 percent growth over a three-year period. Its mission is to make a meaningful difference in the lives of others. Amerifirst Home Mortgage is a division of Amerifirst Financial Corporation.
Photo at top: The team delivers lunch to frontline workers at AdventHealth: Jessica Jenkins, Amerifirst, and (L) Tyler Burns and Brian Kruppa with Dubsdread staff.