Thrillist, the Group Nine Media-owned digital brand dedicated to food and travel content, is seeking to bolster the local restaurant economy, which is being hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic.

The lifestyle publisher is leveraging its platforms and content teams to raise donations for the Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation (RWCF) — a nonprofit created by and for restaurant staffers. On the Thrillist homepage, readers will be able to click a donation widget, while the company will also share myriad calls-to-action across its social media channels and video content.

RWCF was founded in 2018 to advocate for gender equality, racial justice, and fair wages in the restaurant industry. In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, however, the organization is turning its focus to a COVID19 Crisis Relief Fund, with the majority of funds benefiting the Southern Smoke Foundation for industry workers in immediate financial crisis.

On the content front, Thrillist is producing a limited docuseries called Ghost Kitchen (see below), furnishing a look at the chefs going above and beyond to deliver food and keep their businesses afloat. The first episode follows JJ Johnson, a James Beard award-winning chef at the Fieldtrip restaurant in Harlem. Separately, Thrillist is launching a multi-platform franchise titled A Love Letter To My City, where celebrities, chefs, and bartenders will write and read odes to their beloved locales.

“At the heart and soul of Thrillist are the restaurant workers and the businesses we cover,” chief content officer Meghan Kirsch said in a statement. “There was no other option than to use our platform as a resource to help the Restaurant Workers Community Foundation so we can do our part to help the struggling community we care so deeply about. We only hope our coverage and messaging help take just a small piece of the burden off the culinary community.”

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