Eight Bay Area restaurants struggling to survive during the shelter-at-home order recently received $100,000 from Facebook's CEO Mark Zuckergerb and his wife Priscilla Chan.
The owner of Dohatsuten in Palo Alto said Zuckerberg is a regular customer but when she got an email from him offering a gift of $100,000 she thought it was a scam.
“We didn’t believe it til we saw the numbers in our bank account,” said owner Seiko Alba.
Turns out it was no joke. Zuckerberg and Chan transferred that money to Alba’s account and now she plans to pay it forward.
“I just appreciate what they did for us and we are going to use that money to give back to health workers and people in shelters,” she said, adding that with the financial boost she can now stay open more days and longer hours.
That helps employees like Julian Aragon who’s been struggling to support his two kids.
“I have to pay my rent and buy food so it’s a benefit for me cause now I have more hours,” said restaurant supervisor Julian Aragon.
In total the Zuckerbergs gave $100,000 to eight of their favorite restaurants including Palo Alto Sol and Fuki Sushi in Palo Alto, Chef Chu’s in Los Altos and La Ciccia and Liberties Bar and Grill in San Francisco.
Most of them have spent weeks preparing meals for healthcare workers.
With many of the restaurants seeing business plummet more than 70% during the shelter-at-home order, the gift could be the taste of relief they needed.