Tony Xu moved to the United States from China when he was 5 years old, and watched as his mom ran a Chinese restaurant while she was saving up for medical school. Xu, who also worked in the restaurant as a dishwasher, went on to found DoorDash, the food delivery app that makes it easy to never, ever leave the house (except when you do). Now, Xu is doing his part to help other newcomers to the U.S. through a new DoorDash initiative called Kitchens Without Borders, which the company says is designed to promote business owners who are immigrants and refugees.
Kitchens Without Borders is kicking off by putting 10 San Francisco Bay Area restaurants in the spotlight, including Bay Area favorites like Los Cilantros, Sabores Del Sur, Little Green Cyclo, Afghan Village, and Sweet Lime Thai Cuisine. The 10 restaurants are all owned by immigrants or refugees trying to earn an honest living in their new home. The idea is to give “people like my mom more opportunities for growth while supporting more diverse, inclusive communities,” Xu wrote in a blog post, noting that a third of business owners in the restaurant industry are immigrants.
Not only do the 10 restaurants get highlighted in DoorDash’s video mini-series (you can watch it here), but Kitchens Without Borders is reportedly providing funds to let the restaurants offer $0 delivery fees (be sure to tip the driver with cash), getting premium placement in DoorDash’s app, and additional marketing opportunities. While it’s just in San Francisco for now, DoorDash plans to expand to additional cities in the future.
It’s great to see tech companies using their platforms to help their communities, but seriously: Don’t forget to tip your DoorDash driver.