The Little Venice Group of restaurants and Bermuda Gas cooked up the idea to give RBR soldiers, the Bermuda Fire & Rescue Service and medical staff from the Covid-19 test team $10 vouchers to honour their front line contribution to the battle against the coronavirus.
A spokesperson for the Little Venice Group said the restaurant chain had provided meals for staff at the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital at the peak of the coronavirus crisis and wanted to honour uniformed services who also worked around the clock to protect the public.
She added: “It was important to also recognise other important essential workers who have been working non-stop throughout this pandemic.”
A spokesperson for Bermuda Gas said, “Bermuda’s ability to manage this period was ably assisted by several groups of essential workers who continued to provide resources for the community as we battled this deadly Covid-19 pandemic during both the shelter in place and the phased recovery process. Their contribution has not been forgotten and their contribution continues to the present day.”
Major Duncan Simons, the Regiment Careers Management Officer, added: “Our soldiers are always touched when their dedication to duty is recognised. The RBR has had a tough year with Covid-19 and hurricane embodiments, but has, as ever, stepped up when the country needs them.
“We offer a worthwhile and rewarding experience with good rates of pay and there is another opportunity to join the Regiment next month, with Recruit Camp in February.”
He said: “It is significant that major employers like Little Venice and Bermuda Gas have decided to make this kind gesture because they, like so many other companies, recognise the quality of training and dedication that RBR training provides, all of which can give job applicants an edge in interviews.
“We are very grateful to both companies for their generosity.”
A spokesperson for the Bermuda Fire & Rescue Service said firefighters were grateful for the voucher donation.
He told the two companies, “The BFRS stands ready 24 hours/7 days a week to serve our community and thank you for thinking of us during this challenging period.”
Dean Parris, the Covid-19 chief administrator and project manager at the Department of Health, said: “The Ministry of Health would like to thank Bermuda Gas and the Little Venice Group for providing these vouchers.
“The staff who received them greatly appreciate the thoughtfulness of this gesture which went a long way in the team feeling appreciated by the community which they serve.
“They have been working tirelessly over the past several months to ensure the impact of COVID-19 to our island is minimized as much as possible.
“This has meant working extremely long hours – evenings and weekends – to do this work, so it’s wonderful when these efforts are recognized.”
Representatives of the two companies handed over the vouchers to the services in a ceremony at Hamilton Fire Station on Monday.
The vouchers can be used at Cafe4, L’Oriental Express, La Trattoria, Little Venice and the L’Oriental restaurant, all in Hamilton.