ACTNews, BEKASI – It was a hot noon in Bekasi, a city of more than two million residents. As a satellite city that supports all the activities of urban communities in Jakarta, this city was also affected by the Large Scale Social Restriction (PSBB) policy that has been implemented to curb the spread of COVID-19.
The community has been massively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic which brings impacts on both health and the economy.
The restriction of public gatherings has left many public places deserted by visitors, including restaurants and cafes in Bekasi, especially after the government urges eateries to close or serve carry-outs only.
However, one restaurant in East Bekasi, Bekasi City, decides to open and actively take part in a charitable activity despite the outbreak that leads to the temporary closures of eateries.
Located in the Grand Dhika City Apartment, a restaurant named Casa d Java Café & Resto were seen busy cooking meals, not for the customers, but for charity.
The five-by-five kitchen was seen busy with activities. Two cooks were busy preparing food to be packed into rice boxes which would then be distributed to the needy, including informal workers like taxi drivers and hawkers.
"I stumbled upon an Instagram post made by ACT Bekasi, a campaign for supporting those financially affected by the outbreak. I forwarded it to the owner of this restaurant. He was inspired to share food with the needy even though, initially, we were closed and only served delivery orders from the tenants of this apartment," said Dini, an employee of Casa d Java Café & Resto in mid-April.
The restaurant is still operating not only to keep making food for the needy, but also to continue employ the workers despite the declining revenue.
"The revenue decline does not really matter for the restaurant owner. What matters for him is that his employees can keep working, especially those who have families living outside Bekasi. They can’t go home, so they must continue working here and receive their monthly salary," said Dini.
The impact of the outbreak on the livelihood of many people, including its own employees, has inspired Casa d Java Café to get involved in a charitable activity although now they have to close. "Finally, we involve all the employees here to cook and produce food so that they can help others out there. There are multiple benefits," Dini added.
Dini also hoped that more and more restaurants also participate and work together to save the nation and its people affected by Coronavirus. Previously, Casa d Java Café had a food distribution program every Friday to the orphans in Bekasi.
Now, during this difficult time, the restaurant expands its charitable act. Together with ACT, Casa d Java Café distributed 500 meal packages in the Free Meal Operation, starting from April 7 to 22.
The collaboration with Casa d Java Café will continue until Ramadan. ACT Bekasi Branch Manager Maulana Ishaq highly appreciated the generosity of Casa d Java Café for helping others in this difficult time. "The pandemic causes the economy to weaken. Consequently, people have not been able to get food as Ramadan is drawing near. Alhamdulillah, the collaboration with Casa d Java Café continues in Ramadan. Insha Allah, iftar meals will be distributed to underprivileged residents in Bekasi, "concluded Ishaq.