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Bite-sized Stories

Consolidates modes/channels of support to small food businesses, humanizes the impact of COVID-19, and incentivizes individual contributions

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Bite-sized Stories is a website that collects business and consumer-side stories about fond experiences in their local food businesses. Users can browse a crowdsourced repository of local food businesses to contribute in a way that is meaningful to them. Support methods that are consolidated, span varying levels of effort, time, finances, and skill, so that anyone can lend a hand—even suggest new modes of support. Business owners can use the platform to tell their own story, show how they are adapting to the pandemic, and provide support methods that are meaningful to them. 


There are 4 key features on the website: 

1. Stories: users can browse stories in their local community or view stories from a specific business. Business owners can also upload their business’s story, which can be viewed from individual restaurant pages. 

2. Contribute: Through the contribute function, users can look up businesses to support and filter results by what’s local to them, the type of food they serve, what kind of help that business is seeking, and when they will break even from their losses. There is also a general FAQ page where users can better understand modes of support across varying levels of effort, time, finances, and skill, and find one that best suits their needs. 

3. Submit a business: By filling out a form, any user can nominate a business to be added to the platform’s repository. Submissions would have to be approved and verified by the business owner. 

4. Submit your own story: Users can submit their own short stories about their beloved food businesses. Stories can be submitted in the form of text only, image accompanied by text, video, or voice recording.

What is the need are you focusing on?

Small businesses play an important role in local communities everywhere. However, due to social distancing measures, small food businesses are struggling to survive. Their struggle is compounded by a variety of factors, namely: 

- A de-humanized view of the problem these food businesses are facing

- Lack of a quantitative understanding of the problem 

- Individual consumers feeling like their contributions cannot make an impact

- Information overload and scattered resources

- The different ways food businesses may appreciate support versus the ways communities are giving support

- The ways food businesses can adopt new modes and channels of support

- Varying amounts of time and money an individual is willing to devote to provide support 

- Not being able to foresee the in-person experience that both business and consumers miss

Which type of submission are you sharing?

  • Identifying a gap that needs to be addressed

Describe the business pivot or adaptation in 3-4 sentences.

As the food industry has suffered the greatest impact out of all industries in the U.S., restaurants, especially small, family-owned ones, are struggling to attract customers and maintain a steady cash flow. By humanizing the problem and celebrating the joy that local food businesses bring to their communities, Bite-sized Stories aims to drive direct contributions towards small food businesses.

Do you plan to implement this solution?

  • I plan to share with an implementing organization

Describe the impact that this solution will create in the world.

Through a story-centric approach that appeals to nostalgia and empathy, this solution will drive direct support towards local, family-owned food businesses. The platform will educate users on the impact of COVID-19 on the food industry in the United States, but also encourage them and give them the resources/tools to make meaningful contributions to food businesses local to them. Users’ contributions will help small food businesses break even, collectively revitalizing local economies and keeping local communities alive.

What is your profession?

Students

Where are you located (country)?

United States

Where are you located (region)?

  • North America

What industry is your business/company in?

  • Student

Which classification describes your organization/business?

  • Concept/I have not yet formed an organization

What kind of stakeholders and partnerships are needed to pursue this solution?

  • Funding- Grants
  • Funding- Loans
  • Funding- Investment
  • Stakeholders/Partnerships- NGOs
  • Stakeholders/Partnerships- Private Sector

Do you need help building partnerships and finding partners?

  • Yes

If Yes to the above, please share 1-2 sentences describing the specific help you desire.

We are looking for nonprofits and local groups to help us implement and scale from our local communities to across the U.S. We are also looking for partnerships that will allow us to maintain, regulate, and iterate our product as we continue to develop.

Attachments (1)

Supporting Food Businesses.pdf

Screens of the key features

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