Minnie Bell's COVID-19 Relief Fund

Due to the mandated COVID-19 "shelter-in-place" order, Minnie Bell's temporarily closed on 3/17/20.  This was heart-wrenching, as we had to temporarily lay off our entire staff. We have 9 employees, many with families, that are an integral part of the Minnie Bell's team and I want nothing more than to support them during this time. When we were forced to close, we emptied our kitchen for all employees to take home food, but food alone is not enough during this unprecedented time.

We are doing our best to reach out to local and federal government for assistance and relief, and apply to any available grants, but our employees need support now and we must consider other options. I know first hand how much a promised government economic bailout can fail. During the 2008 recession, I lost my home despite governmental promises to provide relief. I'm not willing to rely on the government alone to mitigate this inevitable economic recession, which has the potential to devastate my community and employees.

We are asking you for your help now.

What will we do with $18,000?
1) My first and foremost priority is my employees. With 9 employees, I would like to be able to provide each one with a $2,000 stipend under the assumption that Minnie Bell's will remain closed for a month or longer ($18,000 total). This will allow them to simply pay their bills during this unexpected time of unemployment.
2) If this money is secured for my employees, anything else I receive will go towards ensuring that we can reopen after this devastating period, and return job stability to each and every one of our employees. This would include:
-Funds to cover our first payroll (which is around $9,000 for two weeks of work for 9 employees)
- Funds to go towards re-opening costs, such as restocking our kitchen so we can start serving you as soon as we are able

No donation is too small, and anything will help. With so many people in crisis right now, we are eternally grateful that you would consider supporting Minnie Bell's.

With gratitude,
Fernay & The Minnie Bell's team

Words from our community
Small businesses will, and must, be the leaders of our recovery. Entrepreneurs like Fernay breathe resiliency, and keeping their businesses healthy for recovery will result in better jobs and more equitable recovery scenarios than nearly anything else your money can do right now. Fernay is a talented chef, an inspiring leader and a voice for herself and our community. Her business should be the future of our economy, and her workers and her family must have an opportunity to live through this disaster in good health and high hopes.
-Caleb Zigas, Executive Director at La Cocina 

During this time, I think it's important we band around businesses that have a history of valuing social impact over profit.  As a San Francisco native who grew up in the Fillmore neighborhood, Fernay is a longstanding pillar of her community and proof that an equitable and compassionate business model can be successful. Fernay works to preserve diversity and provide opportunity to women and people of color in her community, and we cannot let her exemplary leadership be lost during this time. When all this is over, we will need people like Fernay to help rebuild the Bay Area.
-Amy Gragnolati, Co-founder at LONA

Donations (176)

  • Maya Tromburg
    • $15 
    • 3 yrs
  • Annie Palmer
    • $20 
    • 3 yrs
  • Theresa Schrider
    • $200 
    • 3 yrs
  • Anonymous
    • $40 
    • 3 yrs
  • Afton Thomas
    • $20 
    • 3 yrs


Fernay McPherson
Emeryville, CA

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