The celebration will be much different this year at Houston’s Three Brothers Bakery, but it will still be a celebration nonetheless. In spite of the coronavirus pandemic that has greatly affected its business, the bakery is recognizing its 71st anniversary.
Three Brothers Bakery will be commemorating the special day at their Braeswood location with cookies for 71 cents each. Additionally, the bakery has created Mitzvah Funds and is encouraging its loyal following to donate $7.10 to commemorate the special day. Mitzvah is Hebrew for Good Deed. After receiving some media attention for its struggles to survive yet another disaster, people began sending the bakery money to use to bake for others in need and helping keep their team employed.
After receiving a number of “donations” plus a grant from the Texas Restaurant Relief Fund, sponsored by Spoetzel Brewing, the makers of Shiner Beer, Three Brothers Bakery decided to formalize a program. The donations help keep their team working, feeds those in need and the bakery’s owners give those supported a wholesale discount, which allows the funds to feed even more. The Mitzvah Funds currently support:
- Emergency Aid Coalition: The EAC provides emergency relief to those most in need through sack lunches, food pantries, provision of school supplies and clothing centers. Emergency Aid Coalition uses the baked goods within its sack lunch program
- Feed the Frontline HTX: FTFL is a non-profit organized to provide support to local restaurants while feeding health care workers and first responders. The food provided by them shows appreciation and thanks to those who work on the frontlines
- Homeless and Hungry – Jay Hamburger: For over 30 years, Three Brothers Bakery has worked with Jay Hamburger to feed the homeless every week
- Jewish Family Service: JFS is a non-profit offering support to those with disabilities, mental illness and the elderly. Three Brothers Bakery has worked with their Celebration Company for over a decade and has partnered with them to provide food for the elderly and those in need within the Houston community
- Restaurant and Hospitality: Second Servings is a non-profit seeking to end food waste in Houston. They have committed to providing 10,000 meals a week to the hospitality industry
For the third time in its history, Three Brothers Bakery is being helped by the US Small Business Administration’s loan program – the first time with a disaster loan after Hurricane Ike in 2008, the second with disaster loans after Hurricane Harvey in 2017 and this year with a PPP loan enabling the bakery to survive the economic downturn associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.
“After surviving four floods, a fire and a hurricane we are experts at small business disaster recovery, but this one has been absolutely the hardest economically; what a difference a year can make,” says Bobby Jucker, co-owner of Three Brothers Bakery.