Support The Parlour’s laid-off staff

We are the owners and co-founders of The Parlour, an ice cream shop that's been in downtown Durham, NC, since April 2013. Our ice cream shop has been a busy social gathering place for 7 years. But on March 15, 2020 we had to shut our doors to the public in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

We’re temporarily shut down except for sales to a few wholesale customers, and we’ve laid off all 18 of our staff in the meantime. If and when we resume pickup-only hours, the two of us will likely be able to handle all the work ourselves. As long as it is risky to gather in groups, we don’t feel comfortable asking employees to come to work and interact with each other and/or the public.

We paid our staff a severance equivalent to their scheduled hours through March 28. But with no idea of how long we’ll need to stay closed, we can’t offer them more from our coffers. We need to save what we can so that we're able to reopen some day—and offer jobs to everyone again.

If you’ve appreciated our staff’s hard work and you have the means, please consider contributing to this fundraiser to put a little extra in their pockets during these difficult times.

How does this work?
Once a week, we will withdraw funds from this campaign's balance and split it among any employees who've opted in. The split will not be weighted by their seniority or typical hours. We’ve excluded one employee who’d already given notice weeks before and another who’d only worked a few days before we closed.

An employee may decide to opt out if they have a new job or some other source of financial support, they may decide to opt out. We are not going to pry into anyone's financial situation to try and exclude them.

None of the money raised is going to us or the business. This is not an attempt to recoup the severance that was already paid. We are just trying to get additional financial assistance for our laid-off staff.

What about unemployment and federal relief?
We’re no lawyers, but it seems that Governor Cooper’s executive order 118 mean that most of our staff should be eligible for unemployment. We are doing our best to quickly respond to claims as required so our employees will be helped. If eligible, they should get whatever NC provides (at most ½ their average weekly pay) plus an extra $600/week for up to 13 weeks from the CARES Act. It’s possible many former employees’ unemployment checks will be bigger than their paychecks would have been, in addition to the one-time payment created by the CARES Act.

That said, the state is seeing record numbers of unemployment claims, and application site is not the most user-friendly. We can’t be sure how quickly the state will process claims. Besides, these are stressful and unpredictable times. If someone is getting some money from the government, it doesn’t mean they’re undeserving of help from private citizens. 

How long will this campaign last?
At the moment we intend to keep this fundraiser up until we are able to reopen to the public again with ice cream scooped to order. We may end early if donations drop off or if we’re sure that everyone is receiving substantial relief from elsewhere. We may also keep the campaign going if we reopen but with limited hours for staff.

We're looking forward to reopening and providing living wage jobs for these and other Triangle residents for years to come.


  • Kelly Roth 
    • $30 
    • 7 d
  • Teala S 
    • $25 
    • 19 d
  • T. Elliott 
    • $50 
    • 28 d
  • Amy Bourret 
    • $10 
    • 1 mo
  • Anonymous 
    • $200 
    • 1 mo
See all

Fundraising team: Vanessa and Yoni Mazuz (2)

Yoni Mazuz 
Raised $245 from 3 donations
Durham, NC
Vanessa Mazuz 
Team member
Raised $135 from 4 donations
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