For a company that has been steadily growing since its humble start in 1992 and now boasts locations from Vancouver to Ottawa and most cities in between, it's especially important to take a little time to give back to different local communities. In 2008, Joey Restaurants established their Cup of Care program, a national initiative that sees staff from all levels of the business preparing large batches of nutritious food for local shelters and community assistance programs in cities like Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver.
Originally Cup of Care provided large batches of hearty soup to community partners, but Joey made the switch to preparing chicken pot pies from scratch using large portions of their rotisserie chicken and vegetables. Preparing thousands and thousands of pies is clearly a more labour intensive process than making soup, but the result is something much more comforting to the individuals who receive them.
This year, the initiative in British Columbia will send off several thousand chicken pot pies to The Dugout, the Union Gospel Mission and Seymour School in the Vancouver area, as well as Kelowna's Women’s Shelter. Joey's Alberta regional staff is cooking up a similar amount for the Calgary Drop-In & Rehab Centre, The Mustard Seed and Edmonton's Youth Emergency Services Shelter and Hope Mission. Their Winnipeg effort is providing pot pies to the Siloam Mission, and in Ontario, to Toronto's Good Shepherd Ministries and the Ottawa Mission.
Joey also operates a few restaurant and Local Public Eatery locations in Seattle and Los Angeles, where their staff will also be preparing foods to send to local shelters. In total, the company-wide charitable effort will be providing just shy of 12,000 meals to people in need.
“It’s gratifying to bring Cup of Care back each year and to give to worthy causes in the communities where we operate across Canada and in the United States”, says the company's executive chef Chris Mills. “Teams across all of our restaurants love lending a hand to make the pies and distribute them to people in need.”