Edgy Mama: Feed kids, boost local businesses, help Haiti

Edgy Mama: Feed kids, boost local businesses, help Haiti-attachment0

At some point, I want, no I need, to write about Haiti and about talking to my kids about what’s happening there. But right now, like many folks, I’m still trying to get my head around it all. So I’m going to throw out a little something pro-active that we can all do in the meantime.

I’m going to offer you a deal. I’ll tell you about a bunch of inexpensive and kids-eat-free restaurant options locally, so you can save money while feeding your children. But you have to promise me that you’ll send any cash you save to Haitian relief programs. I recommend that you donate to the American Red Cross Haitian Relief Program at www.redcross.org or to locally-based Mission Manna at www.missionmanna.org. You can donate to both on-line with a few clicks.

I trust you to keep track of how much you’re saving and send it on your own. Even better? Let your kids do the math and help you make the donations.

So here’s the list by night of the week, plus extra information about a one-day local restaurant fundraiser for Haiti:

Sunday night: Kids eat free at Hooter’s. Dads, the Hooter’s folks want you to send whatever you would’ve paid for that burger and fries to Haiti.

Monday night: Kids eat free at Don Papa’s and Fuddruckers (after 4 p.m.)

Tuesday night: The familiest-friendly night in town. Kids eat free at Urban Burrito, Fuddruckers, Denny’s, Lone Star, The Asheville Mall Food Court, Ruby Tuesday’s, and The Bier Garden. Also family night deals at Asheville Pizza and Brewing Company on Merrimon.

Wednesday night: Kids eat free at Chai Pani, Bier Garden, Fuddruckers and La Fiesta. Blue Sky Café offers kid meals for 99 cents.

Thursday night: Kids eat free at Moe’s Southwest Grill from 5 to 6 p.m.

Friday night: A bleak night out with kids, but see category below titled “Good deals all the time.”

Saturday night: Kids eat free at Lone Star from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Denny’s after 4 p.m.

Good deals all the time: At Moose Café and IHOP, kids eat free after 4 p.m. every night. A slice of cheese pizza from Barley’s Pizzeria & Taproom that’s bigger than your kid’s head is always $2. Many local restaurants have kids’ menus that include lower prices and smaller portions. Ask if you don’t see these options on the menu.

I’m not suggesting you take your kids out to eat every night, even if it’s free (most restaurants assume you’ll buy an adult meal with a free kid meal. In fact, some require it). But if you do take advantage of any of the options I’ve listed, please take a moment to send the money you saved to aid those in Haiti. 

At the same time, you’ll be supporting local businesses, many of which need a little help in the off-season — especially after the extra bite this winter’s brutal weather has taken out of business.

Here’s another way you can help this week, without even having to go online afterward:

Twenty local restaurants will donate 10 percent of their end-of-day sales on Thurs., Feb. 11, to the American Red Cross for relief work in Haiti. Participating restaurants are: 12 Bones Smokehouse, Artisan Catering & Deli, Barley’s Taproom & Pizzeria, Blue Ridge Dining Room, Burgermeister’s Kitchen & Tap, Chai~Pani, The Corner Kitchen, Doc Chey’s Noodle House, Fig, Horizons, Lexington Avenue Brewery, Luella’s Barbeque, Mamacita’s Mexican Grill, Piazza, Rise ‘n Shine Cafe, Sunny Point Cafe, Sunset Terrace Chophouse, Table, and Tupelo Honey Cafe (both locales).

Thank you, in advance.

Anne Fitten “Edgy Mama” Glenn writes about a number of subjects, including parenting, at www.edgymama.com.

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8 thoughts on “Edgy Mama: Feed kids, boost local businesses, help Haiti

  1. Piffy!

    You mean the same Red Cross that still can’t account for most of the money they received to help during Katrina?

    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/03/24/national/main1438713.shtml

    Here’s a tip. Explain to your kids the history of Haiti, how recently the IMF and World Bank helped ruin their economy and agricultural infrastructure with massive debt, leading to people moving to the cities to live in poorly constructed slums, which lead to the large number of deaths that exacerbated the deeply-embedded problems of poverty, colonialism, and slavery.

    Or, you could just say they aren’t civilized or something.

    Is food not bombs still serving?

  2. Thanks for the tip, pff.

    I don’t think my kids are ready to deal with the complex political and social interactions between developed and under-developed countries. Yet.

    They’re still at the “why do natural disasters sometimes kill innocent kids and could this happen to me?” stage.

    Oh, and feel free to send your cash wherever you think it will be most helpful. Do you have suggestions?

  3. www.projecthappilyeverafter.com

    I’m not local (I read Edgy because I’m a devoted fan), but I can say that Kids Eat Free nights have helped us surf our way through the recession. They are the best marketing concept ever.

  4. Piffy!

    no, edgy, i really don’t have any suggestions. Although i’m sure there are numerous small groups that actually do good things with the money they recieve, unlike the RC.

    i just want to remind people that the Red Cross is NOT a good choice. They are corrupt and top-heavy, like any large “aid” organization. Their crimes during the Katrina aftermath are disgusting and should have made no one want to donate to them ever again. The money you send to them will barely trickle into anything meaningful.

  5. Corinne

    I have been an off-and-on volunteer for the Red Cross Disaster Action Team (DAT) for a few years for the DC area (National Capital Area Chapter). The entire chapter, which covers DC, and several counties in Maryland and Virginia, had over a thousand volunteers, with only 4 paid employees, making just above minimum wage (and on-call 24/7). Most of our funds went to biomedical expenses (aka blood donations), purchasing emergency vehicles and their upkeep, food, water, and medical supplies. The rest went to local communications and community education events. In fact, the Red Cross is the only non-profit mandated by Congress to do what they do. About 70 cents of every dollar donated provides actual care, service, or supplies to those in need. The rest goes to salaries and employee benefits. You can see it here in their financial statement for last year http://tinyurl.com/yc58moe

    I have witnessed and myself helped families who lost their homes, possessions, and sometimes loved ones in disasters like floods, fires, and power outages. We put families and individuals in safe housing, and made sure they had food, clothing, personal comfort supplies, and mental health services until a more permanent solution could be found. Being a victim of disaster myself, and hearing false reports that FEMA and the government were doing anything at all, the only real, tangible, and effective assistance I have experienced was through the RC. They firmly and strictly adhere to a “help anyone and everyone” policy, where race, religion, immigration status, social, and economic status (ahem…the 9th Ward, where the RC was the only agency present) have no bearing whatsoever on who receives help.

    In my own personal experience (and I stress that), the biggest “black hole” for unaccounted funds was client fraud (for instance claiming more dependents than they actually had, using money cards for things other than necessary items which cannot be counted to their non-profit status).

    WITH THAT SAID, I DO BELIEVE that the current non-profit model is completely broken and corrupt, but the RC at least gives the opportunity for you to DO something. Check out a book called “The Revolution Will Not Be Funded”, which a fellow volunteer gave me.

    So how do you become an effective donor? DO SOMETHING. Take a day or two a month and use your two hands to distribute supplies to your needy neighbors. Make an even bigger impact if you can, and travel to places like Haiti and war-torn countries and USE YOUR HANDS. I do encourage you to give to the Red Cross, because it costs more for them to ship supply items than to buy them on the island. But if you’re not comfortable with that, here’s some alternatives:

    You can mail hygiene kits to this charity
    http://www.convoyofhope.org/go/how

    More health kits
    http://tinyurl.com/yek4jl7

    Here’s an awesome list for clothing donations
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/01/15/haiti-clothing-donations_n_424610.html

    Yoga mats?!
    http://www.yoga4trauma.org/

    To donate your time and expertise in Haiti – especially those with special skills and equipment who maybe are unemployed and can’t afford the travel expenses
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/anne-dilenschneider/flight-to-crisis-needs-vo_b_450573.html

    HOPE THAT HELPS!

  6. Corinne

    I have been an off-and-on volunteer for the Red Cross Disaster Action Team (DAT) for a few years for the DC area (National Capital Area Chapter). The entire chapter, which covers DC, and several counties in Maryland and Virginia, had over a thousand volunteers, with only 4 paid employees, making just above minimum wage (and on-call 24/7). Most of our funds went to biomedical expenses (aka blood donations), purchasing emergency vehicles and their upkeep, food, water, and medical supplies. The rest went to local communications and community education events. In fact, the Red Cross is the only non-profit mandated by Congress to do what they do. About 70 cents of every dollar donated provides actual care, service, or supplies to those in need. The rest goes to salaries and employee benefits. You can see it here in their financial statement for last year http://tinyurl.com/yc58moe

    I have witnessed and myself helped families who lost their homes, possessions, and sometimes loved ones in disasters like floods, fires, and power outages. We put families and individuals in safe housing, and made sure they had food, clothing, personal comfort supplies, and mental health services until a more permanent solution could be found. Being a victim of disaster myself, and hearing false reports that FEMA and the government were doing anything at all, the only real, tangible, and effective assistance I have experienced was through the RC. They firmly and strictly adhere to a “help anyone and everyone” policy, where race, religion, immigration status, social, and economic status (ahem…the 9th Ward, where the RC was the only agency present) have no bearing whatsoever on who receives help.

    In my own personal experience (and I stress that), the biggest “black hole” for unaccounted funds was client fraud (for instance claiming more dependents than they actually had, using money cards for things other than necessary items which cannot be counted to their non-profit status).

    WITH THAT SAID, I DO BELIEVE that the current non-profit model is completely broken and corrupt, but the RC at least gives the opportunity for you to DO something. Check out a book called “The Revolution Will Not Be Funded”, which a fellow volunteer gave me.

    So how do you become an effective donor? DO SOMETHING. Take a day or two a month and use your two hands to distribute supplies to your needy neighbors. Make an even bigger impact if you can, and travel to places like Haiti and war-torn countries and USE YOUR HANDS. I do encourage you to give to the Red Cross, because it costs more for them to ship supply items than to buy them on the island. But if you’re not comfortable with that, here’s some alternatives:

    You can mail hygiene kits to this charity
    http://www.convoyofhope.org/go/how

    More health kits
    http://tinyurl.com/yek4jl7

    Here’s an awesome list for clothing donations
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/01/15/haiti-clothing-donations_n_424610.html

    Yoga mats?!
    http://www.yoga4trauma.org/

    To donate your time and expertise in Haiti – especially those with special skills and equipment who maybe are unemployed and can’t afford the travel expenses
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/anne-dilenschneider/flight-to-crisis-needs-vo_b_450573.html

    HOPE THAT HELPS!

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