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Local restaurants donate $2,000 to help feed hungry

SALISBURY — Rowan Helping Ministries has received a $2,000 grant from Darden Restaurants Foundation, the charitable arm of Darden Restaurants, owner of Olive Garden and Longhorn Steakhouse.
Rowan Helping Ministries operates a homeless shelter, soup kitchen, crisis assistance office, food pantry and clothing center on North Long Street in Salisbury.
The grants program, now in its third year, empowers each restaurant in the Darden family of brands to help award a $1,000 grant to support local community programs. This year’s donation will enable Rowan Helping Ministries to meet the weekend soup kitchen needs, supporting efforts in feeding 150 to 180 people each day.
“It’s really great to be able to contribute to such a great cause and to know the money will go to work in our own community” said Russ Garland, general manager of Olive Garden.
Darden’s Red Lobster, Bahama Breeze, Seasons 52, The Capital Grille, Eddie V’s and Yard House also participate in the program. Nonprofit organizations receiving grants support one of Darden’s three key focus areas: education, preservation of natural resources and hunger relief.
“It is a privilege to be part of such a generous community where individuals and many businesses such as Darden Foundation continue to step forward and assist us in caring for those in need in our community,” said Kyna Grubb, executive director of Rowan Helping Ministries.
A key component of Rowan Helping Ministries’ mission is to deliver help through cooperative community action.
In addition to this grant, the Salisbury Olive Garden and Longhorn Steakhouse are part of the Second Helping Program, donating food to Rowan Helping Ministries weekly.
“Together, we are caring for our neighbors in crisis. Rowan Helping Ministries is a great organization that helps families in our own neighborhood,” said Chris Foote, managing partner of Longhorn Steakhouse. “To be able to contribute to that endeavor is truly an honor.”

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