Newark Working Kitchens has helped sustain important jobs and small businesses, while providing vital nutritional assistance to underserved communities. This effort has created a successful model to support the tremendous comeback our city is undertaking, and I hope to see this effort scaled in New Jersey and nationwide.”Cory BookerUnited States Senator
Innovative + Measurable
We develop our impact programs in collaboration with our local communities as we look to incubate innovative, scalable and sustainable solutions that advance economic development in our hometown and beyond.
Newark Working Kitchens (NWK) is one such example. Funded and led by Audible, NWK empowers Newark’s restaurants to stay open and feed vulnerable neighbors. This proven, scalable model is easily replicated by corporations, governments, and philanthropic organizations.
The next stage of this nationally acclaimed program is Newark Working Kitchens Delivers, a lunch delivery service for employees that continues to sustain local restaurants and address food insecurity in the city.
Newark Working Kitchens Impact
Over 1.5 million meals delivered to date.
Meal delivery to more than 70 locations.
Over 35 restaurants have relaunched services, sustaining hundreds of jobs.
Newark Working Kitchens Delivers (NWKD) harnesses the purchasing power of local employers to sustain and grow area restaurants. NWKD is a meal delivery app that allows corporate employees to order lunch from NWK restaurants, with an optional meal match for Newark’s most vulnerable residents. For every meal ordered by its employees, Audible donates a meal to address food insecurity in Newark, and the program continues to preserve and create jobs for cooks, servers and delivery people.
NWKD was born out of Newark Working Kitchens (NWK), which was launched in early April 2020, as Covid-19 shuttered the city’s small businesses, restaurants and office buildings. The goal was to fund area restaurants to cook and deliver nutritious meals to senior, low-income and disabled housing residents who were struggling to access healthy food during the pandemic.
Working with community stakeholders, NWK identified city residents most in need, reaching more than 10,000 residents across 70 locations since launch. As of December 2022, NWK has delivered over 1.5 million meals while helping to keep the lights on at dozens of our most cherished restaurants, keeping cooks, servers and delivery staff employed.
NWKD in the Press
NBC New York profiles how the innovative NWK model pays local restaurants to feed residents in need.Read more
NJBIZ features the NWK program and Audible as “one of the most highly regarded corporate citizens” in its 2022 list of companies to watch.Read more
Audible Founder Don Katz and chef Marcus Samuelsson were featured at the Montclair Film Festival, where they discussed storytelling, community, food, and the NWK program.Read more
The NWK Delivers app launches, continuing to support local restaurants and jobs, while enabling corporations to directly invest in the resilience of their city.Read more
Fast Company explains how the NWK Delivers app continues to support local restaurants by leveraging the return to work of Newark corporations.Read more
Audible won Digiday’s Greater Good Award, being honored for its community programs including NWK, which demonstrate how a company can create scalable strategies to address global and local issues.Read more
Fast Company named Audible a finalist for its World Changing Ideas Award, recognizing NWK as an innovative program that helps create positive change.Read more
In an op-ed for Fortune magazine, Audible founder Don Katz and chef Marcus Samuelsson discuss how corporations can help local restaurants survive and spur city-wide recovery.Read more
21 Days to Impact
When Covid-19 hit in March 2020, Audible knew it was critical to act fast to support our local restaurants, particularly those we’ve partnered with for our Lunch Out Wednesday program. Audible employees reached out to Mayor Ras J. Baraka’s office and asked how best to support the city, and learned food was an immediate need. We worked closely with the mayor’s office, World Central Kitchen, chef Marcus Samuelsson and community organizations, and three weeks later, NWK was up and running.
NWKD in Action
Until workers return to the office, my restaurant’s survival will depend on programs like Newark Working Kitchens Delivers.”Mike EldeedOwner of Pita Square
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