August 24, 2016
In its first six months of business, local chicken sandwich joint CHKCHK has raised over $12,000 for the Q Center- Portland’s LGBTQ center- with its unique, community-minded business model that sets aside five percent of gross sales for charitable contributions.
Restaurateurs Aaron & Jessica Grimmer (The Picnic House, Barlow, High Noon) opened CHKCHK with the mission of creating a responsibly-sourced chicken sandwich, while giving back to the community that had supported their earlier entrepreneurial endeavors. By pledging to donate five cents of every dollar spent at CHKCHK to the Q Center, the Grimmers wanted “to imbed a commitment to community in the very DNA of the business model. We believe that when you invest in delivering something more than just great food and drink, your community rallies around it.”
“CHKCHK’s model of donating is revolutionary,” says Justin Pabalate, Executive Co-Director, Development and Community Relation at the Q Center. “Not only because they give such a substantial amount of their gross proceeds to the Q Center, but because they have taken their support several steps further and redefined what a donor and nonprofit relationship can truly be. The leadership and friendship of CHKCHK has been deeply felt by Q Center staff and community members who rely on the sanctuary that Q Center provides.”
CHKCHK’s monthly donations have funded the creation of a new full-time Program Manager position at Q Center. Raina Daniels, who was hired to fill the position, says that the increased staff capacity was critical in the wake of the Pulse Nightclub shootings that rattled the LGBTQ community nationwide. “Between our small staff of four, we were able to collaborate with other agencies, raise donations and rapidly coordinate events, and provide healing support in ways that would have been unimaginable without our expanded capacity,” says Daniels. “Our basic programming continued to operate smoothly through June while we additionally hosted
blood banks, held a community vigil with over 2,500 attendees, honored the shooting victims through portrait installation and private services, and coordinated mental health professionals to provide grief counseling inhouse. Without our CHKCHK-sponsored staff, we would have had to choose between and scale these efforts.”
The Q Center and CHKCHK are currently working on ways to further their partnership, including developing a training regime to create a culturally competent and welcoming environment where LGBTQIA+ employees can thrive and be successful, as well as exploring what it would mean to have a job placement program for LGBTQI+ community members across their family of restaurants.
For more information, please contact communications director Aaron Wessling at 786.218.4028 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
971.302.6368 www.CHKCHK.com @CHKCHKPDX
To get a taste of equality and have a hand in advancing LGBTQIA+ resources, you can visit CHKCHK at 1305 NW 23rd Ave, Portland, OR 97210.