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"Back2Business" program aims to help West Michigan restaurants, families

"Back2Business" program aims to help West Michigan restaurants, families
Posted at 9:12 PM, Jan 30, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-30 23:11:00-05

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.  — With restaurants across the state ready to welcome diners back inside, FitBody Boot Camp wants to help them get back to business.

“Our community needs it now more than ever,” said Matt Wilber.

Wilber owns nine FitBody Boot Camps throughout West Michigan and is vice president of the franchise.

FitBody recently launched “Back2Business.”

It’s an initiative aimed at supporting local restaurants and feeding families while helping people get fit.

“It’s not just the businesses that have suffered but it’s also been our community that has suffered,” said Wilber, referencing COVID-19 restrictions.

Beginning in mid-February, FitBody will discount its 28-day jump-start program then use 100 percent of the proceeds to purchase gift cards to nine local restaurants near each of their locations. The cards will then be given to families who need it most.

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“I think business owners are obligated to take care of their community, so when their community is in need, that is the time when business owners should step up,” said Wilber.

According to Wilber, FitBody hopes to raise between $10,000-20,000 and assist at least 100 families.

Right now, people can nominate restaurants. Wilber says they’ve received 29 applications so far.

“The majority of people submitting them are based on that ‘they’ve been in our community for a long time, a lot of more--I guess you would call “mom-and-pop” type locations--that they would love to see supported so that they can still be around,’” said Wilber.

Wilber hopes other businesses or people in a position to help will do so.

“I have a mentor that says your true character comes out when your back is against the wall,” said Wilber. “How do you show up when things aren’t going well? And obviously right now, a lot of businesses are struggling and we want to be able to unite our community and help support our local community.”

Wilber says FitBody will most likely work with local school districts to identify families in need of the gift cards.

FitBody will accept restaurant nominations until Feb. 7.

To apply, click here.

RELATED: Michigan organizations react to indoor dining reopening Feb. 1

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