The global pandemic has changed us all! Forced to pause to consider our goals and the purpose behind them, we are all viewing our lives with new perspective. It will be interesting to see if this will result in change or if we will all revert back to our old ways. After all, we all adjusted to the “new normal” of the pandemic within a few months. Will we forget what we’ve learned through this process just as quickly?
I am determined not to forget and so my personal mission is to find more purpose in our work in the restaurant business beyond financially sustaining our family. After all, making money would be easier in just about any other industry! We always say, owning and operating a restaurant is an all consuming labour of love. In order to do our jobs well, we work hard and make many sacrifices. We sometimes turn to each other and ask, “is it all worth it?” Is our work meaningful? Is there a place for our fine dining restaurant in this new world?
Here’s what I’ve come up with. Restaurants…
Support The Arts
The core purpose of our business is a celebration of the arts! We have a respect and love for food as it is a source of joy, comfort and nourishment. Our industry also provides strong support for the musical arts. As you may know we host musicians each weekend. The arts play a critical role in maintaining our mental health especially in times of crisis.
Help People Connect with One Another
This is the element of our business that motivates us, the element that has kept us operating for a decade. Restaurants provide an environment that supports our basic need for human connection. Families and friends pause to enjoy one another in real time, face to face. As many of us finally venture out from isolation, our establishments offer a meeting place to reconnect.
Support Other Local Businesses
Restaurants support a broad range of food & beverage suppliers and local farmers. We support them by regularly purchasing their products & services to the tune of $30 billion per year and by promoting them to our customers. Canada’s small businesses have had a particularly difficult time during the economic shutdown and will need all the help they can get moving forward.
Drive the Economy & Provide Employment
The survival of Canada’s food service sector is critical to our economic recovery from Covid 19! Prior to the pandemic our foodservice industry was a $93 billion dollar industry directly employing 1.2 million people. We are the fourth largest private sector employer and the number one employer of first time workers.
Donate to Charities
Restaurants host fundraising events and donate hundreds of thousands of dollars per year to charities in their local communities. They help create awareness for their causes and encourage people to connect through giving.
Thank you to those wonderful people who have supported us during the first week our dining room as been open again! We are grateful! I am well aware that many of you are fearful and that there is a natural instinct to isolate during this time. We’ve created our online store Marquee Food Shoppe in order to offer support to those of you who prefer to enjoy your meals from the comfort of your own home. We also offer catering through our brand Feast Boutique Catered Events for your private parties. Wherever you choose to eat, I hope that meal time is a time to connect with others. If nothing else, the last few months have taught us that these moments are precious and shouldn’t be taken for granted!