Virginia Beach sandwich shop feeds roughly 1,500 people during pandemic


VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — Many people across Hampton Roads have stepped up to help others in need during this difficult time. That includes the owner of a sub shop at the Oceanfront.

Back in mid-March, Zero’s Subs owner Mark Stevens decided that he’d feed any hungry kid or teen during this pandemic. Since then, he’s fed roughly 1,500 people and says it wouldn’t have been possible without the help of the community.

“It’s something I knew had to be done,” Stevens said. “I want to make sure that any child that’s hungry gets fed, somehow, some way.”

Stevens says most of the food has been paid for by community donations.

“The community has been fantastic,” he said. “Pretty much all the food has been paid for by donations. I’m going to run this until June 12, because I think that’s the last day of school and my commitment is to keep feeding them until the last day of school. I’m excited. My theory is, if I feed one hungry kid, then I’m happy.”

He says any extra donations will go to StandUp for Kids Hampton Roads, which is a nonprofit that helps homeless youth in the area.

Stevens has also partnered with the nonprofit “REACH Reading,” which gives away free books with each meal.

“They donate books for kids… They encourage reading,” Stevens said.

Stevens says the need comes in waves. No matter what, he and his employees will be there to meet it. He encourages anyone in need to reach out to the sub shop for help.

“You can deliver them yourself to the people who might need them,” Stevens said. “I just want to get the sandwiches and the bagged lunches out to whoever might need them.”

Stevens will keep this going until June 12 at the sub shop located at 632 Virginia Beach Boulevard, Virginia Beach.

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