HARLINGEN, Texas (KVEO) — Many restaurant servers rely on tips to make ends meet and with some restaurants not offering in-person services, those tips are no longer a reliable source of income.
With the COVID-19 pandemic still impacting the industry, one woman is rallying her community to take part in the #VenmoChallenge to help servers in the Rio Grande Valley.
Scrolling through TikTok, Clarissa Ruiz saw a way to give back.
“I posted on my Facebook saying ‘hey, this is what I kind of saw if anyone is willing to donate go ahead.’ The first day we got $527,” she said.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, there have been long lines outside restaurants. Many businesses only do curbside to stay open and practice safety guidelines.
Ruiz saw the stress servers were going through.
“They’re sweating, hustling back and forth and I have countless friends who are servers who have given me horrific stories where they’re like ‘Nobody tips anymore. Nobody wants to tip because they think we’re not serving them’ and I’m like are ya’ll serious right now,” she said.
It is a small gesture she hopes will bloom into people throughout the RGV looking out for one another.
“When you see a whole community coming together to help one person out, man that’s what it’s all about,” said Ruiz. “There’s hope there’s joy there is so much good left in this world. The Rio Grande Valley is amazing I love them.”
So far, they have raised another $1,500. They say 100 percent of the money goes to servers here in the area.
Below is the information to make a donation.
To follow their Facebook, click here.
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