National LGBT Chamber and GrubHub give four Texas businesses COVID relief grants

Four Texas LGBTQ-owned and allied businesses received grants from the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce on Monday to help businesses affected by COVID-19.

About 50 people, mostly business owners and their supporters, attended the event Monday evening at Dallas winery Zerbina Wines. In partnership with GrubHub and the North Texas LGBT Chamber of Commerce, Nerdvana Frisco, Dallas’ Salum Restaurant, Irving’s Savorista Kitchen & Catering and Brownwood-based Steve’s Market & Deli all received grants totaling $10,000 each.

Lydia Gonzalez reacts to receiving a grant for Savorista Kitchen and Catering. The North Texas LGBT Chamber of Commerce, Grubhub and National LGBT Chamber of Commerce announce the recipients of Grubhub's Community Impact Grant Program to Texas businesses affected by COVID-19 on Monday.

(Allison Slomowitz / Special Contributor)

The North Texas LGBT Chamber also received a $10,000 check from GrubHub and the National LGBT Chamber.

Tony Vedda, CEO and president of the North Texas LGBT Chamber of Commerce, began the ceremony reciting lyrics from the 1972 musical drama Cabaret: “Leave your troubles outside. So life is disappointing, forget it. In here, life is beautiful.”

Co-founder and president of the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce Justin Nelson said the chamber has given $1.5 million to businesses affected by COVID-19. He said that, now more than ever, LGBTQ businesses need to support one another.

Referring to the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade, Nelson said: “If you don’t think that our rights, that your marriage is up, then I hope you’ve got a lot of room in the hole you’re living in, because you’re gonna need a lot of friends.”

He said the grants are just one of the ways the community comes together. The National LGBT Chamber has also set aside $25,000 to pay for one year’s worth of membership for businesses that were not local affiliates of the chamber.

Grubhub’s Community Impact Grant Program offers no-strings-attached grants for struggling LGBTQ-owned and allied restaurants affected by COVID-19. The grants are expected to range from $5,000 to $100,000, according to the program’s website. Under the grant program, the National LGBT Chamber will allocate 30% of the funds to the businesses owned by people of color and transgender/gender non-conforming individuals.