The Heirloom Foundation is a national 501(c)3 nonprofit organization based in Charleston, SC that advocates for a healthy food industry through public outreach, professional development, and benefit events. We reinvest in our communities through direct service grants to nonprofit organizations that provide support to restaurant workers and entrepreneurs.
The Heirloom Foundation advocates for a healthy and sustainable food and beverage industry through outreach and education initiatives in an effort to eliminate the stigma that exists in kitchens around asking for help. Please contact us about speaking engagements.
We actively engage stakeholders throughout the restaurant community, creating a committed support network and providing professional development training for entrepreneurs who either need guidance on creating financially sustainable businesses, or on creating healthy work environments.
By providing grants to local direct service providers in related fields, the Heirloom Foundation is investing in a better quality of life for culinary professionals in this generation and the next.
The restaurant industry employs 14.7 million people in the US, accounting for more than 10% of the population. Culinary workers were recently given the chance to express their concerns in an informal survey from Chefs with Issues. Chefs with Issues, in collaboration with the Heirloom Foundation found that out of more than 2000 respondents to this survey, 94% reported having current or past mental health issues. The top 3 issues reported were Depression, Anxiety, and Substance Abuse, with 73% reporting suffering from multiple mental health conditions. These respondents point to the need to destigmatize mental health issues among restaurant workers, with only 2% feeling that they could speak openly at work. There was also evidence of a need to increase resources for effective coping among our culinary workers, with only 18% of respondents receiving insurance through their workplace.