NEWARK, NJ – A Newark-based free food delivery service received $ 2 million on Thursday to continue efforts to serve low-income residents of the city during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Newark Working Kitchens, an organization launched by Audible in 2020 amid the pandemic, works with local restaurants and chefs to provide nutritious meals for the elderly, families and the low-income homeless. The organization received $ 2 million from the New Jersey Economic Development Authority’s (NJEDA) Sustain and Serve NJ program to help local restaurants keep going. Following the announcement of the funds, the organization announced that it had also surpassed the 750,000 mark for meals served to needy residents of the area.

“Newark Working Kitchens continues to be a key response model in helping the Newark communities hardest hit by COVID-19,” Don Katz, founder and chief executive officer of Audible, said in a statement. “The generous support of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority will help Newark Working Kitchens expand their reach to communities across the state.

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“I urge donors of all sizes to support this initiative that has provided thousands of meals to our neighbors while helping local restaurants stay open and retain jobs,” said Katz.

Newark Meal Delivery Group has helped more than 20 restaurants relaunch services and hire new employees, helping to keep hundreds of jobs. Since its inception, Newark Working Kitchens has delivered meals to more than 10,000 residents in 70 locations. All meals are prepared by the organization’s 30 participating restaurants, more than half of which are minority and women owned. The organization announced that it will also expand to six new restaurants across the city

With Newark being one of the cities hardest hit by the pandemic economically, it continues on its recovery path as thousands of elderly, low-income, disabled residents and homeless people continue to struggle to access consistently healthy meals during the pandemic.

Newark Working Kitchens has actively raised funds to provide these communities with safe and consistent access to food while also serving the city’s local restaurants.

“Small businesses are the backbone of Newark’s economy, and we appreciate the resilience and ingenuity of the Newark Working Kitchens, who continue to raise funds to employ local Newarkers, reopen our restaurants, and look after ours during these troubled times Take care of neighbors. “The Mayor of Newark, Ras Baraka, said.

To date, the organization has received private and philanthropic support which includes a $ 500,000 grant from the city in addition to contributions from Audible, PSE & G, TD Bank, the New Jersey Devils, and other local businesses and organizations.

The organization is also preparing a major campaign to welcome new investment partners to expand the Small Business Support and Food Deprivation Program in Newark and other surrounding areas.

“Owning a restaurant in Newark, the city I was born and raised in and which I love so much, is humbling,” said Monique Bonilla, owner of The Weekend Spot. “COVID has made each day harder than the next, but I’m so happy to partner with Newark Working Kitchens and make meals with love, just as our mothers and grandmothers used to make. It is equally rewarding to know that I can now employ my people and keep my business going. I am very grateful for the opportunity to prepare meals for my neighbors in need. “

Newark Working Kitchen restaurants currently participating include:

  • Andros Restaurant & Diner, Barcade,

  • Black swan espresso

  • Blueprint Café

  • Bulgogi Zip

  • CityRub smokehouse

  • Grain bread

  • Fresh coast

  • Harvest table

  • Kilkenny Alehouse

  • King’s Family Restaurant & Catering

  • King’s # 1 family restaurant

  • The kitchen

  • Marcus B & P.

  • McGovern’s tavern

  • Tomato pie market + novelty burger

  • Mompou Tapas Bar & Restaurant

  • Nizi sushi

  • O’LaLa empanadas

  • Panzz Seafood & Wings

  • Pita Square

  • Roberts Pizza

  • Sigri Indian BBQ

  • Taino’s kitchen

  • The green chickpea

  • The halal boys

  • The Walla

  • The weekend spot

  • Uncle Willie’s wings

  • Vonda’s kitchen