Restaurant workers need physical and emotional stability to thrive in an industry that often puts a strain on work/life balance. Stability can come from a number of sources, from employer programs to affordable health care to access to mental health resources. The Colorado Restaurant Foundation is dedicated to supporting restaurant workers to help them advance and thrive for as long as they’re in the industry.

The CRF Health & Wellness Resource Center provides information to help foodservice and hospitality employees make decisions about their health-care needs. We are also working with health-care providers and organizations to meet the specific needs of the industry in the most affordable way possible. Keep reading for links to a wide variety of resources.

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What's New?

May is Colorado Mental Health Awareness Month, and there are a number of events planned to shine a light on addressing and improving mental health in the community. Here are a few ideas to get you started; visit the Denver Mental Health Awareness Month Facebook page for more information and events throughout May:

Angel Relief Fund Expands to Cover Mental Health Care

The CRF’s Angel Relief Fund offers financial relief of up to $1,000 for Colorado restaurant and hospitality workers experiencing unexpected illness, injury or natural disaster (including COVID-19). Starting this month, we’re expanding the Angel Relief Fund to cover mental health care as well. Once you apply and are approved, we’ll work with a mental health provider of your choice (and that meets specific criteria) to cover one-time or ongoing expenses of up to $1,000. Direct reimbursement payments to your provider will be set up to protect your privacy.

Learn more and apply here

CHOW (Culinary Hospitality Outreach Wellness) Training Classes

CHOW supports mental health and wellness in the culinary and hospitality industry through shared stories, skills, and resources. CHOW’s free Mental Health Amuse Courses are available Mondays, Wednesday, and Thursdays. The classes were created by industry peers to “shine light on some of the most pressing issues affecting workplace wellness.”

Learn more

Mental Health First Aid Classes

Wellpower (formerly the Mental Health Center of Denver) offers a Mental Health First Aid class that “presents an overview of mental illness and substance use disorders in the U.S. and introduces participants to risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems, builds understanding of their impact, and overviews common treatments.” Classes are scheduled every two weeks, or you can set up private classes for your business or organization.

Learn more

QPR Classes: Question, Persuade, Refer

The mission of the QPR Institute is “to reduce suicidal behaviors and save lives by providing innovative, practical, and proven suicide prevention training.”

Learn more

Medical Health Resources

United HealthCare Health and Wellness: A guide to understanding health and wellness needs for you and your children. (CRA members, check out how United HealthCare can help insure you and your team through traditional insurance and Teledoc virtual care here.)

Mental Health Resources

Call Lines and Crisis Assistance

Colorado Crisis and Support Line: If you or a loved one is suffering a mental health crisis and need immediate help, call this support line to speak with mental health professionals available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, at 844-493-8255, or send a text to 38255.

Crisis Text Line: In crisis? Text for free, immediate help anytime from anywhere. Connect with a crisis coordinator within 25 seconds on average. Communicate until you feel safe. Text HELLO to 741741.

Substance Use Disorder Helpline: In crisis? Call for free, immediate help anytime from anywhere. An individual and/or family member can speak with a licensed recovery advocate about their concerns and needs, get a referral to a professional who can develop a personalized treatment plan, and access family support resources. Call 855-780-5955, or visit Optum’s Live and Work Well website.

Emotional Support Helpline: Call 1-866-342-6892 24/7. This free help line is staffed by professionally trained mental health experts and is open to anyone.

In-Person and Online Mental Health Support

CHOW (Culinary Hospitality Outreach and Wellness): CHOW is a nonprofit organization that provides mental health resources to folks in the restaurant/hospitality industry. Our mission is to support wellness within the hospitality industry and to improve the lives of our community through shared stories, skills, and resources. CHOW is trying to reduce the stigma and address concerns that have been long overlooked in the hospitality industry.

Khesed Wellness: Outpatient mental health and wellness services that are affordable for the underinsured, including the hospitality industry.

Ben’s Friends: Free hospitality-focused substance abuse support network. Join a safe environment with others who understand the unique challenges experienced by people on the front lines in restaurants, hotels, and other hospitality positions. Click here to find a meeting near you or access telephone meetings.

Active Minds: Active Minds is the nation’s premier nonprofit organization supporting mental health awareness and education for young adults.

Mental Health America: Online Screening to determine whether you are experiencing symptoms of a mental health condition.

Code 4 Counseling: Free Mental Health Sessions by Trained Counselors Open to Hospitality and Restaurant Employees.

Aspen Recovery Centers: The AspenRidge REACH program in Colorado is an online substance abuse treatment program for anyone who is ready to get sober and stay sober. Licensed therapists use private, HIPAA-compliant video for individual, group, and family sessions – all from the privacy of your own home.

The Trevor Project: Support for transgender and nonbinary youth.

Hope For The Day: A non-profit movement empowering the conversation on proactive suicide prevention and mental health education.

Not 9 to 5: A non-profit global leader in mental health advocacy for the foodservice and hospitality sector.

Healthy Pour: Healthy Pour can help educate your restaurant or bar team on improving their health and wellness.

Women’s Recovery: Women’s Recovery exists to help women overcome addiction and find healing for mental health issues in a warm, welcoming environment. The organization’s outpatient addiction treatment center in Colorado combines trauma-informed care with clinical treatment.

Man Therapy: Man Therapy® takes a humorous approach to addressing the serious issue of the high rate of suicide and unaddressed mental illness among men.

The Phoenix: A sober active community that fuels resilience and harnesses the transformational power of connection so that together participants rise, recover, and live. The Phoenix offers virtual classes in fitness, meditation, and other methods of maintaining focus and balance.

Angel Relief Fund

If you are a Colorado restaurant employee experiencing hardship due to an unexpected illness, injury, natural disaster, or mental health crisis, the CRF can provide financial assistance up to $1,000 through our Angel Relief Fund.

For Those Experiencing Lost Wages

Unemployment: File an unemployment claim with the Colorado Department of Labor & Employment

Disability: Apply for Social Security Administration disability benefits

Emergency Mandatory Paid Sick Leave: Colorado Department of Labor & Employment

Housing Resources

U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD): Resources for people experiencing pandemic-related rent or mortgage issues.

Home Forward: Short-term rent assistance

Northeast Denver Housing Center: Affordable housing in northeast Denver

Industry Hardship Grants

Bartender Emergency Assistance Program: BEAP grants seek to provide immediate financial assistance for those in the hospitality industry who encounter temporary, emergent, financial hardship due to unforeseen and/or catastrophic life events.

CORE: Children of Restaurant Employees provides financial relief to food and beverage service employees with children when navigating a qualifying circumstance.

General Community Service Organizations

211: Connects you to expert, caring help.

Salvation Army

Mile High United Way

Project Angel Heart

Metro Caring

Stacy Griest

Have any questions?

Call or email Stacy Griest, Program Manager, Colorado Restaurant Foundation

sgriest@corestaurant.org  (303) 830-2972 x149