San Francisco Launches 'We Will Recover' to Promote Healthy Holidays, Shopping Local, and Helping Neighbors in Need
The We Will Recover campaign encourages San Franciscans to take action to support the recovery of San Francisco and offers information and resources for residents to celebrate the holidays safely, support local businesses, and find ways to volunteer and support charity for those in need
San Francisco, CA — Mayor London N. Breed today announced the launch of the We Will Recover campaign to promote individual actions that San Franciscans can take to support the City’s recovery from COVID-19. We Will Recover launches amidst an increase in COVID-19 cases in an effort to offer the public ways to engage in traditional holiday activities safely during the pandemic.
We Will Recover focuses on three ways people can do their part this holiday season: Holidays at Home, Shop and Dine in the 49, and Help Your Neighbors in Need.
- Holidays at Home offers guidance about gathering and other holiday activities, as well as safe options for San Franciscans to engage in over the holidays.
- Shop and Dine in the 49 offers information about how to support local restaurants and businesses during the holiday shopping season.
- Help Your Neighbors in Need offers information and access to San Francisco-based volunteering and philanthropic activities during the holidays and beyond.
For more information about We Will Recover, go to sf.gov/wewillrecover
“San Francisco will recover from COVID-19, but what that recovery looks like and how fast it comes is on all of us. Our individual actions to control the spread of the virus, to support our small businesses, and to help our neighbors in need is the key to our City emerging from the pandemic together,” said Mayor Breed. “The choices we make in how we spend our time and our money will lay the groundwork for our recovery from COVID and the economic challenges that have come with it. As we go into a holiday season unlike any other we’ve experienced, we wanted to show people all of the ways that they could support the City, even during a global pandemic.”
All three focuses of the We Will Recover campaign are central to positioning San Francisco for economic recovery. Continuing to manage and minimize the spread of the virus is key to continuing the City’s trajectory towards reopening and increasing economic activity. Supporting small local businesses allows those unique San Francisco establishments that are central to the City’s character continue to survive as they have during the challenges of the last nine months. San Francisco’s economic recovery also depends on meeting the needs of the most vulnerable residents. Philanthropic and volunteer efforts on the part of the public are important complements to the City’s ongoing efforts to fund programs and services that ensure San Franciscans have access to food, shelter, mental health, and other services.
“This is not an ordinary year and this will not be an ordinary holiday. It will be difficult but our actions this holiday season protect our loved ones and our community in the long run. Our ability to mitigate this virus is the best gift we can give to our family, friends, neighbors and our local businesses,” said Dr. Grant Colfax. “Choose to give the gift of health this holiday season by taking precautions and limiting activities to ensure we can celebrate big next year.”
Small businesses make up more than nine out of ten San Francisco businesses, employing more than half of the City’s workforce and generating tens of billions in economic activity each year – most of which remains in the City. Up to half of San Francisco’s small businesses are at risk of permanently closing. If San Francisco is to emerge from the pandemic with the robust small, local business base that it is so famous for and that makes the city such a diverse and vibrant place, San Franciscans must continue to support their neighborhood shops.
"This holiday season is crucial this year for our small businesses and they need our support. As many small businesses continue to struggle through this pandemic, every dollar counts to help them make ends meet and keep thousands of San Franciscans employed,” said Joaquín Torres, Director of the Office of Economic and Workforce Development. “As we make safe and smart choices to shop and dine, we want residents to remember that San Francisco’s mecca of amazing restaurants and local producers of crafts and products can survive only through your support and spending. Every dollar spent at local businesses, especially at our mom and pop shops in the diverse neighborhoods that define our City’s character, is essential for the ongoing cultural and economic vitality of San Francisco.”
“Shop and Dine in the 49 has become an important part campaign for San Francisco’s small businesses,” said Maryo Mogannam, President, Council of District Merchants. “It is woven into the fabric of our small business community, and now more than ever it is critical to the survival of our small businesses.”
Likewise, volunteering and donating to local San Francisco non-profit organizations supports vulnerable San Francisco residents who are in need of food and other essential services, especially during the holidays. Prior to COVID-19, one in four San Francisco residents were at risk of hunger due to low income, and the global pandemic has disproportionately impacted these families even further. The San Francisco Human Services Agency has reported an additional 34,515 applications for food assistance programs since March. Additionally, San Franciscans who are most vulnerable to COVID and who are saying home as much as possible are feeling the negative mental health effects of isolation. To meet these urgent needs during the holiday season, Help Your Neighbors in Need is launching with a focus on food security and anti-isolation efforts, and is promoting ways that San Franciscans can volunteer safely and donate to support their fellow residents in need.
“In addition to daily meal deliveries to thousands of homebound seniors living in the City, our team of staff and volunteers have, and continue to be, a friendly voice on the other end of the phone for senior meal recipients letting them know that someone cares about them and they’re not alone,” said Ashley C. McCumber, CEO of Meals on Wheels San Francisco. “With COVID, these essential services and friendly calls are more important than ever before. These phone calls help lessen the negative impacts of social isolation for older adults, which according to Meals on Wheels America’s recent data, is associated with detrimental health impacts and an extra $6.7 billion in Medicare spending each year. We’re excited the City is launching Help Your Neighbors in Need because organizations like ours throughout San Francisco need volunteers and philanthropic contributions to serve our clients and make sure people are taken care of during the holidays and year round.”
The We Will Recover Campaign, as well as each individual focus, will have a website and will use a combination of traditional media, social media, flyers/signs, and advertising to promote the key messages and offer individuals the information they need to take action. More information about We Will Recover is available online at: sf.gov/wewillrecover
Holidays at Home
The Holidays at Home Campaign incorporates multilingual public health guidance about Holiday Activities, Travel Advisories, and ideas about safe alternatives to traditional holiday activities. The choices people make this holiday season have direct impact on how many people will get sick and possibly die from COVID-19 this fall and winter. Staying at home and celebrating with your immediate household is the safest thing to do. Suggestions for safe and festive activities include preparing traditional family recipes with people you live with, hosting virtual holiday parties or creating decorations, crafts and greeting cards. San Franciscans are advised to avoid unnecessary travel and higher risk activities like holiday parties, large celebrations, and events that involve sharing food or drink especially if any of these activities occur indoors. Find more information, visit: sf.gov/HolidaysAtHome
Shop and Dine in the 49
Shop and Dine in the 49 Mayor Breed’s year-round campaign supporting local businesses managed by the Office of Economic and Workforce Development. This year the campaign features the Shared Spaces program and commercial corridors that have been closed to vehicles in order to facilitate outdoor shopping and dining opportunities. The Shop and Dine website will include a link to a map of all establishments permitted for outdoor operations through the Shared Spaces program and beginning Thanksgiving day, three Shared Spaces corridors in three opportunity neighborhoods will be decorated and offer prizes for shoppers such as reusable tote bags and face masks. The neighborhoods include Excelsior, Chinatown, and Mission neighborhoods, all of which have seen a significant increase in retail vacancies over the last year. Additionally, a virtual social media feed of San Francisco based businesses that offer online and curbside pick-up options for holiday meal and gift shopping will be available through the Shop and Dine in the 49 website. For more information, visit: www.shopdine49.com
Help your Neighbors in Need
Help your Neighbors in Need features San Francisco-based volunteering opportunities focused on food security and anti-isolation efforts during the holidays and into the new year. The site lists a range of volunteer opportunities with non-profit organizations that are working to provide food access and anti-isolation support to San Francisco residents. Help Your Neighbors in Need offers both in-person and virtual volunteer options. For those who prefer to donate to philanthropic efforts, the site offers San Francisco based giving campaigns that support San Francisco non-profit organizations, including the City’s Give2SF Fund. For more information, visit: sf.gov/helpyourneighbors