Retail Café food service temporarily suspended
When we learned that we qualified for the SBA Restaurant Revitalization Fund grant, it gave us the confidence to know we would likely be able to make payroll until the middle of the Fall, despite the slow and unsteady reopening of the local food service economy. So it came as a blow to us when we learned two days before our paperwork was to be submitted that the SBA published it’s criteria
that prevented all nonprofits from being able to make application for the grant.
Even though U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley joined Oregon’s Rep. Peter DeFazio, Rep. Earl Blumenauer and Suzanne Bonamici in writing to the Director of the SBA asking for reconsideration of the rules citing Reality Kitchen’s contributions to the Community and unique training program, no response came.
So, like every other business, we have faced the responsibility to meet our payroll through sales and, despite many loyal and supportive neighbors and customers, the numbers have continued to fall short and we have been forced to temporarily suspend the food services in our retail café.
While this will not directly impact our Employment Path Program and wholesale baking operations, it has forced us to make difficult choices in laying off staff who have been more family than employees in order to manage our payroll obligations. With crisis comes opportunities and change, so we remain optimistic that we can turn our finances around, thanks to many kind contributors who continue to make donations to our secure, online portal at www.realitykitchen.org, but that other more dependable and profitable operations will steadily rebuild and return our retail café service, hopefully, by the Spring of 2022.