Perfectly Frank, which specialises in hot dogs, launched the ‘Franks for Friends’ scheme in February after a customer tipped each staff member $100 and donated $500 to “feed folks in the neighbourhood”.
A notice board for the scheme reads: “One meal per customer, per day. Pick a slip and redeem at the register – take-out only.
“If you are unable to pay, enjoy a meal from a friend. We simply ask that you please pay it forward!”
Speaking to USA Today, owner Tarah Morris said that almost 50 customers have benefitted from a free meal under the initiative.
“We don’t ask any questions. We don’t need to know what the details are.
“They could be eating it themselves, they could be bringing it to a neighbour, they could be dropping it off to a homeless guy on the corner,” she said.
“Franks for Friends” has since become a success, with Morris saying that people have “blown us away with your generosity”.
A Facebook post from earlier this month reads: “If I’m being honest, we were hesitant to start ‘Franks for Friends’. There were so many questions that we tossed around with no real answers.
“Were we opening a can of worms that we couldn’t contain? What if people abused the offer?
“What if the demand is too large and we can’t keep up with it?
“But we realised at the end of the day, helping people isn’t a risk. It’s a reward.”
Another update shared on social media on Sunday revealed the true extent of the initiative’s popularity, saying that “by the looks of it, ‘Franks for Friends’ isn’t going anywhere for a while”.
Morris said: “We have a clipboard with – I don’t know – 100 more tickets on deck, waiting to go up on the board. People want to help.
“They are driven by helping somebody.”