Forty-five workers at a Scott Construction’s construction site in Richmond were served free food from a local Mexican restaurant April 24 as Scott’s Lunchbox Challenge campaign gained recruits across the province.
A week earlier, 30 workers at a Scott’s West Van Municipal Hall and Fire Hall project enjoyed lunch from Nell’s Kitchen.
Scott Construction, one of B.C.’s largest construction firms, came up with the #lunchbox challenge concept in March as a way to encourage workers on its job sites as well as help struggling restaurants during the COVID-19 pandemic.
It is very simple concept, said Donna Grant, marketing and project pursuit manager with Scott.
Scott buys lunch for its workers from local restaurants recommended by the workers. The company will serve each site weekly on a rotating basis, she said.
The challenge is already catching on with the Vancouver Regional Construction Association (VRCA) and the BC Construction Association (BCCA) offering support. ITC Construction Group and other firms are also signing up.
“ITC is excited to accept the Lunchbox Challenge to acknowledge our work force and especially support our local community businesses and restaurants that are impacted by our current global challenges,” said Harold Barisoff, vice president construction, ITC.
ITC has active construction sites in B.C. and Alberta.
“When all this is done, our job sites will still want those local places to go to for lunch and if we support them, they will be there,” said Grant.
Restaurants, many of which have seen a dramatic lose of business during the COVID-19 crisis, are chosen by the local construction workers who know local restaurants and nominate them online through social media using the #lunchbox tag.
Scott has eight active construction sites in B.C., Calgary and Milton, Ontario.
Grant noted that the lunches have also been a good way to practice safety protocols. Meals, utensils and condiments are individually packaged and workers enjoy their lunch from a safe distance.
The Lunchbox Challenge caught the attention of the VRCA which is celebrating construction workers during its third-annual April Construction Month.
On April 24, Scott Construction crews at the construction site of the Bridgeport Office Centre on Bridgeport Road in Richmond were treated to lunch from the Little Mexico Cantina in Steveston.
While Scott Construction started the challenge with a single site, both Scott and ITC say they will buy lunches once a week until they’ve treated staff at every one of their construction sites.