Local app pitches in during COVID-19

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB)-- Now is a time when restaurants across the globe are losing a lot of business over concerns for COVID-19.

Keith Miller owns Big Mill's Cheesesteaks.

"I really want to keep the employees employed, want them to be able to pay their bills, so I'm just hoping it doesn't last too much longer," he said.

Developers of a local app decided to step in.

Gift Certificates and More (GCM) President Edward Lavagnino said it felt like the right thing to do.

"We always ask restaurants to support us, give us fundraisers this, fundraisers that, now it's our turn to help them so they can stay in business," he said.

GCM is an app that gives customers the opportunity to save money at more than 120 restaurants.

When they saw what was happening to local restaurants, they decided to help out.

"We all know what's happening right now, the restaurants need our help," Lavagnino said, "So it's very important for GCM to be able to help and give back with the help of the actual city, so we started a GoFundMe account so we can buy food from the restaurants and then donate it to first responders, kids in need, or anybody who needs anything from a not for profit perspective."

And for places like Big Mill's Cheesesteaks, a $100 or $200 order can mean a lot when business is down 75 percent.

"Any business in this time of need is helpful, business is down quite a bit, so with Edward giving me an order, it helps the register ring up," Miller said.

GCM partner Shawn Morrison said the process is pretty simple.

"You just go to gofundme.com and there's a search bar on the page and in the search bar you put in support Gainesville restaurants and from that page you should be able to donate," he said.

You can find the link here: https://www.gofundme.com/f/help-support-your-local-restaurants