Supporting Zweli’s

There is no doubt that during these trying times, a lot of people will suffer. In different ways, and some more than others, but people will still suffer nonetheless. For many people — especially small business owners — that suffering will be inevitable and will happen quickly. In the past few days, I have thought about Zweli’s — a local, family-owned Zimbanwean restaurant right here in Durham. I’ve thought about co-owners Zweli & Leonardo and how during the ongoing McDougald Terrace crisis, they have stepped up as beacons of light in Durham. They are selfless, hardworking and humble servants. They have sacrificed their time, resources, and space of their restaurant to selflessly step up when it would have been easier to do nothing. Yet, like they always do, they chose the McDougald Terrace community. They chose Durham. They chose us.

Now, Zweli’s needs us. As a small business -an employer, a family and truly, a community restaurant-, they are already experiencing the deep effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. 41 of their catering orders have cancelled in the past four days. They are doing their best to overcome these understandable occurrences by trying to operationalize delivery services and take-out curbside orders. This alone will not be enough.This is just the beginning of a marathon. To help cover two months of rent and four cycles of payroll for the staff that make Zweli’s go ‘round, we need to raise $25k.

I am asking the Durham community and beyond to wrap our arms around Zweli’s during this difficult time. I hope you will consider lending your support to Zweli’s, which will allow them to continue to survive, thrive, and be of service to others.  How can you help?

1) Make ANY financial contribution to support the restaurant, it’s operations, and the incredible staff members who make the restaurant go ‘round ; and/or

2) Place a take-out, curbside order is have some delicious Zweli’s cuisine delivered to your door (within a 25 mile radius). To place your order call [phone redacted], text [phone redacted] or email info@zwelis. 

Together, we are stronger. Together, we can do anything.



  • Amati Vaughn
    • $200 
    • 3 yrs
  • Lydia C Jenne
    • $50 
    • 4 yrs
  • Brian Grossi
    • $20 
    • 4 yrs
  • Anonymous
    • $50 
    • 4 yrs
  • Jaymee Stanford
    • $25 
    • 4 yrs

Organizer and beneficiary

Nana Asante-Smith
Durham, NC
Leonardo Williams

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