Restaurant Workers' Community Foundation


We are a community dedicated to making the restaurant industry more hospitable to everyone.

Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation is an advocacy and action nonprofit created by and for restaurant workers.

By addressing quality-of-life issues that disproportionately affect restaurant workers – 40% of whom live on poverty-level wages – we hope to strengthen the workforce and increase opportunities for advancement in the industry to more people. The restaurant industry is notorious for low wages, poor job mobility, high turnover, and burnout. Structural and cultural issues within the industry decrease quality-of-life and make long term work in the industry unsustainable for many. But it doesn’t have to be that way. That’s why we’re focused on:

  • Wage Fairness and Career Ladders

  • Gender Equity and Sexual Violence

  • Racial Justice and Support for the Immigrant Community

  • Mental Health and Substance Abuse


Our Plans for 2019

 Grow the Community of Activated Restaurant Workers

  • Build a website that states our mission clearly and articulates the needs of our community

  • Create a newsletter that keeps our community informed about the policies affecting restaurant workers and how they can get involved

  • Build a database of engaged restaurant community members

  • Expand our Board of Directors and advisory committees to include more individuals working in under-represented areas of the restaurant community

Speak Out

  • Write opinion pieces and speak out on the issues at the core of our mission

  • Hold at least one big fundraiser to show support for our mission

Support Effective Nonprofits

  • We will continue our work raising funds to make grants to nonprofits that are providing career training, advocating for better workplace policies and helping restaurant workers deal with challenges of tough working conditions

  • Network with the community of funders who care about improving low-wage work and vulnerable communities to identify potential grantmaking co-funding opportunities

What We’re Doing:


We are advocates for doing things differently. Our public education seeks to change policy and workplace culture. One third of the funds we raise goes to our efforts to speak out for our community.


We are supporting other nonprofits that provide career training, conduct research on restaurant industry practices, and advocate for fair wage policies and worker rights. One third of our budget is dedicated to grantmaking.

Impact Investing

We are using our dollars to affect the industry in two ways – supporting restaurant businesses that operate ethically and, eventually, using investment strategies to engage in shareholder advocacy. One third of our funds go to impact investing.


  • Sign up for our newsletter

  • Volunteer: join our board or committee

  • Tell your friends and co-workers about RWCF

  • Join the event planning committee and plan our first fundraiser

  • Get involved in participatory grantmaking efforts

  • Write about your experiences for our blog

  • Recommend potential grantees

  • Help us connect to major leaders in the restaurant industry who might want to support our work either by lending their name or financial resources

  • Follow us: @RWCFNYC on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram

  • Donate!