Bank First in Manitowoc, Wis., directed $100,000 toward the purchase of restaurant gift cards from more than 140 restaurants located in the bank’s footprint. The bank is donating those gift cards to families, individuals and non-profit organizations, and other businesses, through various bank programs now that the state’s Safer at Home restrictions have been lifted.
“We strongly believe that as a community bank, we have a social responsibility and moral obligation to meet the financial needs of the communities we serve,” said bank CEO Mike Molepske. “Purchasing gift cards from our restaurant customers not only helps them get through this challenging time, but also allows us to put food on the table for hundreds of families in the communities we serve.”
This initiative is part of what it calls its “all hands on deck” approach to getting people the support they need. It “redeployed” 42 employees from frontline operations to its loan support team as it processed PPP loans.
In addition to offering fee waivers and loan payment deferrals for up to six months, and purchasing those restaurant gift cards, the $2.2 billion bank has bought its 284 employees lunch once a week from many of those same local restaurants impacted by the pandemic.