The COVID-19 pandemic and hurricane haven't been easy on anyone, so the Emeril Lagasse Foundation has replaced its annual Boudin, Bourbon & Beer festival with a fundraising campaign to support the Emeril Lagasse Foundation Hospitality Industry Relief Fund.
The Emeril Lagasse Foundation's Boudin, Bourbon & Beer event was scheduled to celebrate its 10-year anniversary in November, joining together and supporting chefs, winemakers, mixologists, and other hospitality workers.
The foundation was created in 2002 by Chef Emeril Lagasse with his wife, "to create opportunities to inspire, mentor, and enable youth to reach their full potential through culinary, nutrition, and arts education," according to its website.
The goal of the organization is to provide for those who've been hit the hardest from the pandemic: service-industry workers. A contribution of $125,000 will supply funds to help pay for basic necessities, including, shelter, food, medical and utility bills, and more.
"Since we cannot come together this year, as we usually do, for Boudin, Bourbon & Beer, let's come together in support of the incredible people who work hard, day after day, in restaurants and bars. No donation is too big or too small to help the workers who need you now more than ever," Chef Emeril said.
The Southern Smoke Foundation—a relief organization for food and beverage service workers—will oversee those who submit applications and will help distribute funds. Those who have worked in the hospitality industry, including chefs, bartenders, distillery workers, and delivery drivers, are able to apply for funding.
Chef Chris Shepard, co-founder and curator of the Southern Smoke Foundation, said that he is proud to be a part of the Emeril Lagasse Foundation Hospitality Industry Relief Fund. "Chef Emeril has always been an advocate for the hardworking people who make up the food and beverage industry, and I'm grateful to be a part of this fundraising effort, to help take care of our own," Shepard said.
If you're interested in donating, visit BoudinBourbonandBeer.com.