Established in 2017, our emergency relief fund has distributed more than $9.1 million to individuals in the food and beverage industry in crisis.


If you have an emergency, please call 911.


We fund people in the food and beverage industry in crisis: restaurant and bar workers (front and back of house), baristas, sommeliers, farmers, ranchers, winemakers, distillers, brewers, and anyone in the “food chain.”

To qualify for emergency relief funding, you must be currently working a minimum of 30 hours per week in the food and beverage industry. Every applicant must show proof of such employment, so please have paycheck stubs and/or W2s available. Unfortunately, we are unable to make any exceptions.

Examples of need include medical bills, a car accident, weather catastrophes, family support assistance, and mental health needs.


Tips for submitting your application:

  • Please use the description area within the application to explain your individual crisis in as much detail as possible.
  • Case managers are assigned to cases based on the urgency of the crisis and not on a first-come-first-served basis. For instance, life-and-death cases are prioritized over car payment requests.
  • Please have documentation available.
  • If you are asking for help with your rent, please have your lease agreement available.
  • If you need help with your utilities, please have your bills available.

If you have questions about the status of your application, please email unless you have already been assigned a caseworker. If your situation has escalated since you submitted your application, please email The application process is completely anonymous. Only Southern Smoke staff will see an application in its entirety.

Additional resources:

The Southern Smoke staff is working around the clock to get aid to as many people possible. We are experiencing a massive influx of applications. Please be patient with us—we are doing everything we can to get to every applicant. If there is any abusive language or tone used with the staff, you will immediately become ineligible for funding.