Mac Mart restaurant owners encourage Philadelphia customers to donate food instead of tips

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) – We’re proud of two Philadelphia restaurant owners who have encouraged their own customers to open their hearts to those in need.

Sisters Pamela and Marti Lieberman of Gwynedd Valley, Montgomery County, took a homemade macaroni and cheese recipe that they sold from a food truck to a small store appropriately named Mac Mart. The store is located right on 18th and Chestnut Streets in Center City.

Like most restaurants, the pandemic has had to make major changes to the way they do business.

“We literally jumped in our car, we started delivering all of this and across the Philadelphia area,” said Pamela. “That helped us for the first five months because people loved it so much.”

On their journeys in and out of the city, they noticed a striking number of people on the street who were in need and saw this as an opportunity to help. Instead of tipping, they asked their customers to donate groceries or other things they could spare.

“I just thought it would be a nice idea if we ask our customers instead of giving tips,” she says. “Blankets, additional coats, additional winter jackets, or even just items from the refrigerator that you might want to throw away this week.”

“My sister and I will drive around and leave it in churches or take it to hospitals or even leave it on my ward. There are just so many people who need things right now, ”she said. “On the way back to town we might have a whole trunk full of blankets and food.”

You are now collecting donations every last week of the month and have already collected over 20 items. As she explained, it’s all about good karma and spreading the good that you want to see in the world.

“I wish everyone could go home for a warm meal and a hot bed, but if we could give everyone a blanket and a large bowl of macaroni, that’s my only realistic dream,” she said.

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