Brooklyn is paying it forward!
Healthcare workers patronizing Park Slope’s La Bagel Delight are treated to free meals during the ongoing coronavirus outbreak, as members of the community have begun paying for their food in advance for when doctors and nurses arrive at the eatery.
“Yesterday, the line was out of the door. The neighborhood took care of a lot of nurses,” said co-owner Frank Bavaro. “It’s a wonderful thing that people are doing.”
The feel-good initiative started when one local do-gooder called the Seventh Avenue bagel shop asking to foot the bill for a meal delivery to Methodist Hospital across the street.
Since deliveries to the medical facility are difficult, Bavaro suggested adding money onto a gift card instead — and cashiers would use that to pay for hospital staff’s food orders.
“We keep the gift card, and when [healthcare workers] came in, we would just select the gift card,” Bavaro said.
After that initial act of kindness, Park Slopers have been calling into and adding anywhere from $5 to $100 onto the card, which has now been used to purchase dozens of bagels, lunches, and cups of coffee for medical workers on the frontline of the pandemic.
“The other day it went up to $900 and then it went down to $400, and then back up to $800,” Bavaro said. “It just took off.”
Park Slopers have begun promoting the initiative on various social media accounts, like Facebook and the neighborhood network Nextdoor, offering locals an easy way to show their appreciation for the medical professionals.
And the kindness hasn’t gone unnoticed, according to Bavaro, who said the nurses and doctors have been very grateful for the support.
“They love it, they think it’s great that they are being appreciated and feel great being recognized,” he said.
Anyone looking to contribute can call La Bagel Delight at (718) 768-6107.