Countless meal drop-offs and donations have sprung up around Denver in gratitude for all first responders and frontline healthcare workers during this COVID-19 pandemic. It was only natural that a food truck solely dedicated to the same initiative would derive from Denver’s great sense of unity.
The team behind Birdcall, Park Burger, Homegrown Tap and Dough and Gastamo Concepts has donated over 10,000 meals per week by way of the custom #FuelDenver food truck. The purpose of this truck has not only fed frontline workers but it has also created jobs for the struggling hospitality industry.
Rather than having all the bells and whistles of a conventional food truck, this #FuelDenver truck is packed from wall to wall with boxes of prepped and prepackaged meals. So far, the team has partnered with three local hospitals — Denver Health, Saint Joseph Hospital and UC Health Aurora. The list is ever-expanding with plans on donating to various other medical centers in the greater Denver area. Though providing over 10,000 meals is already a massive accomplishment, the team at Fuel Denver Frontlines have set their goal to delivering 50,000 meals.
“Within 72 hours, a team of incredible people came together to launch Fuel Denver Frontlines. We are focused on providing healthcare workers on the frontlines of COVID-19 with nutritious meals made with love from Birdcall, Park Burger and Gastamo Concepts. This effort would not have been possible without a truly special gift from the Tuchman Family Foundation to Denver Health,” Peter Newlin, CEO of Birdcall said.
The Tuchman Family Foundation is a charitable organization located in Englewood, Colorado and made a generous monetary donation that made this initiative possible.
After many layoffs due to government-mandated restaurant and bar closures, it was a glimmer of hope for the restaurant team going back to work in a commissary kitchen.
“We are here to serve in the only way we know; by getting back in the kitchen to create and serve natural foods. #FuelDenver’s main focus is to ensure that all heroes on the frontlines are receiving the fuel they need to continue the fight against COVID-19,” Newlin said.
The menu is curated from recipes that maintain a health-conscious dish while showcasing well-crafted food in an accessible manner. Week one’s menu includes a miso-sweet potato and broccoli bowl, chicken club wrap and a Mediterranean salad.
Though feeding frontline workers is the main goal, making sure all team members prepping and packaging food stay safe and healthy is of utmost importance. The team has to follow safety protocols including frequent and thorough hand washing, wearing gloves and masks at all times, health and wellness checks before every shift, using food packages with airtight seals and practicing a touchless experience when delivering to hospital contacts.
Although our community can’t physically give out a round of hugs, welcomed initiatives like the #FuelDenver food truck feel very similar.