In 1976, we opened our second Chili’s restaurant in a renovated flower shop on the corner of Richmond and Fountain View in Houston. Today, Houston is home to more than 3,000 ChiliHeads and thousands of Guests who are now dealing with the devastation and aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. Since last week Friday, when Harvey made landfall, our teams have been on the ground ensuring our ChiliHeads are safe and have food and shelter. We are fortunate for our ChiliHeads and recognize that with our restaurants closed there are financial implications for them and their families, so we’re providing $1,000,000 in relief pay as a gesture of support.
Since we all can’t be there to physically help, we also opened the Brinker Family Fund, a charitable fund for Team Members in need, for everyone to chip in with an additional one-time donation to help ChiliHeads with extraordinary needs, such as rent or transportation. Since Monday, we’ve already raised more than $20,000 and we won’t stop there. In addition to monetary donations, we recognize many basic supplies are needed and have initiated a supply drive at the Restaurant Support Center to gather items like diapers and school supplies, to send with our next support team headed to Houston and the surrounding areas.
We appreciate the many men and women traveling from around the country to help those displaced. We are honored to connect with these communities by serving food to our brave first responders and the evacuees who have made it safely to Dallas. Our team is working to connect with various organizations and support their volunteers with as many warm meals as we can.
But, we know that’s still not enough.
Back in 1976, Houston was home to our second restaurant, but today, we have more than 1,300 Chili’s restaurants nationwide. We’ve heard feedback from both our ChiliHeads and Guests from across the country whose hearts and thoughts are with those affected and want a way to help. Therefore, on Sept. 5, all Chili’s restaurants nationwide will host a special Donate Profits Day with the goal of raising $250,000 for local food banks to help those affected by this terrible tragedy.
In times of great need, we are seeing the true generosity of the human spirit playing out right before our eyes. We are proud to be a part of this community and know that Texas and Louisiana will recover as we all come together to support them.
President of Chili’s® Grill & Bar