The coronavirus crisis is wreaking havoc on the service industry as restaurants and bars around the country are forced to shut their doors, with some moving to delivery and takeout and others closing down completely.
Over the weekend, Fireball Whisky and Hill Holliday decided to launch an initiative to help support service industry workers during this challenging time.
The "World’s Biggest Tip Jar" effort, which started with a $100,000 contribution from Fireball, is asking people donate money to help assist service industry member groups, such as the USBG Bartender Emergency Assistance Program. Fireball will match all contributions up to $400,000 for the bartender relief fund.
So far, the dedicated GoFundMe page has raised more than $141,000 since going live on Sunday. The #BiggestTipJar bartender is also live on Fireball’s Twitter, Facebook and Instagram channels.
"Bartenders and service industry members have kept America’s spirits high in good times, and in bad. Now, more than ever, we need to be there for them," said Chris Wallrapp, president of Hill Holliday. "We wanted to find a way to bring everyone together to give back and help the service industry manage through these difficult times."
Jake Wenz, chief commercial officer of Fireball parent Sazerac, said that the company is encouraging everyone to join in and "give what they would usually tip when out and about to help service industry members manage through the challenging time ahead."