HER Launches Grant Program to Support Women-Owned Restaurants in Los Angeles, Sponsored by Doordash
May 15, 2021
Following a groundbreaking collaborative event featuring women-owned restaurants across Los Angeles in January 2021 called 10 Days RE:Her, newly formed non-profit RE:Her today announced a Covid-19 relief grant program, sponsored by DoorDash. RE:Her will distribute 15 cash grants of $10,000 each to female-identifying food and beverage entrepreneurs in LA County, which recipients can use to bolster their business however they see fit. Grantees will also receive access to consulting and mentorship from specialists in restaurant finance (Elissa Phillips of Mise En Place Restaurant Services), HR (Delmy Franco of HR Specialists Group) and PR/Marketing (Joy Limanon of Peridot Consulting).
A committee of hospitality and business experts will select the grantees, including Mendocino Farms founder Ellen Chen, former Food & Wine editor-in-chief Dana Cowin, Los Angeles Times food writer Jenn Harris, The Hundreds founders Ben & Bobby Hundreds, restaurant accountant Barbara Barschak, restaurateur Roy Choi, consultant and media personality Monti Carlo, trademark attorney Elizabeth Sbardaletti, Jessica Kaczmerek of the James Irvine Foundation, and Kristin Aldana-Taday of the Hilton Foundation.
RE:Her is a non-profit devoted to the advancement and empowerment of women restaurateurs, supporting members through industry-focused and consumer-facing initiatives, virtual and physical events, and promotion and representation. The organization launched earlier this year with a mission to provide opportunities and resources—financial, educational and more—to women owners in Los Angeles and beyond.
“Over the last four months, RE:Her has grown into a platform for connection for 250+ women to share resources, information, and support, and we want to continue to champion and empower our community with these grants,” says Lien Ta, a RE:Her Founding Member. “The grant program has been a core element of our organization from day one, and we are excited to roll this out to give our members a leg-up as they rebound from the most challenging time in the history of our industry.”
During Women’s History Month, DoorDash, whose donation has enabled RE:Her’s COVID-19 grant program, launched Made by Women—an in-app and digital platform that elevates women-owned businesses by making it easier to identify them by searching “women owned” in the DoorDash app or website. DoorDash also launched various fundraising and loan-matching campaigns to benefit female entrepreneurs, including donations to the James Beard Foundation’s Women’s Leadership Programs. DoorDash is committed to supporting women-owned businesses and will continue to use its platform to drive meaningful change. Partnering with RE:Her is one of the ways DoorDash is to bringing that commitment to life, creating more opportunities for women-owned businesses in the Los Angeles area.
“The initiatives DoorDash has implemented over the last year to support women-owned businesses align with the RE:Her mission, and the partnership we have formed will bolster the RE:Her community beyond just grants—including marketing and educational resources for members,” says RE:Her founding member Heather Sperling. “Third-party delivery can be both a lifeline and a challenge for restaurants, but we are excited to partner with one of the key players in this space to funnel resources back into businesses as they rebuild in the coming months.”
Applications for the grant program will be accepted from May 17-23. Grant recipients will be announced on June 14. Independent, majority women-owned restaurants or culinary businesses in Los Angeles County are encouraged to apply, including catering companies and food trucks. Specifics for eligibility can be found at regardingherfood.org
Nine female restaurateurs in Los Angeles formed Regarding Her (aka RE:Her) in November 2020 as a response to the devastating impact of Covid-19 on the restaurant industry. Their first undertaking, 10 Days RE:Her, united over 100 female food and beverage entrepreneurs across Los Angeles for a 10-day festival featuring unique collaborations, thematic menus, virtual events and conversations, and more.
Now with over 200 members across Los Angeles County, RE:Her is a 501(c)(3) non-profit fund actively seeking donors and sponsors to support its services and initiatives, including its RE:Her Grant Program, designed to distribute cash grants to women-owned restaurants in Los Angeles County impacted by the pandemic.
RE:Her’s founding members are Sandra Cordero (Gasolina Cafe), Sylvie Gabriele (Love & Salt), Bricia Lopez (Guelaguetza), Mary Sue Milliken (Border Grill, Socalo), Kimberly Prince (Hotville Chicken), Dina Samson (Rossoblu, Superfine Pizza), Heather Sperling (Botanica), Lien Ta (All Day Baby) and Brittney Valles (Guerrilla Tacos).
The members of RE:Her’s leadership team operate the organization, and do so pro bono. Their hope is that their work will support and empower the community they hold dear – the female-led culinary world of Los Angeles and beyond – and, in doing so, help to save HER restaurants.