Max and Emily's in Mt. Pleasant to expand free meal program during coronavirus pandemic

MOUNT PLEASANT (WJRT) (3/23/2020) - Even as sales are slow at Max and Emily's Eatery in downtown Mount Pleasant because of the coronavirus, the restaurant is still giving back.

Chris Walton, the owner of the restaurant, said that in this difficult time, the restaurant will continue its "People Helping People" program.

The program began a few years ago and has been a huge success so far. It allows people in the community to receive a free meal from the restaurant on Sundays.

“It’s wonderful," Walton said. "We typically feed around 4,500 meals every year.”

In order to receive a free meal, people in need are required to pick up a coupon from the food kitchen in Mount Pleasant.

“Just because a guest can ‘t pay for a meal or a guest is worried how they are going to pay for their bills, doesn’t mean they don’t need help," Walton said. "If I can do that and I can only go into the hole a little bit less or a little bit more to provide for them, that’s what we all need as humanity right now.”

And while Walton's business sits empty and the community is going through a tough time, Walton said he can do more.

“You know, just talking with you here, we need to expand the program," he said. "There’s no reason that anyone should go hungry in this community because they don’t have the financial resources to pay for it right now.”

Walton said that beginning Tuesday, the restaurant will expand its "People Helping People" program so that any day a person in need can receive a free meal even without a coupon.

"Starting Tuesday at 11 o’clock, if you are unable to pay for meal, if you need a meal, if you are concerned about paying for it in the future, come down and see us," Walton said. "11-2. We’ll take care of you and make sure you are fed.”

Walton said that even though his business is taking it a hit right now, that this is the right thing to do to give back.

“Because people helping people," he said. "Because no one should ever go hungry in this town and no one should go hungry in any town. And I am able to carry that weight for people and I’m going to continue as long as I possibly can to make sure no one goes hungry.”