DoorDash And Partners Launch NYC Restaurant Accelerator From Harlem To Hollis

June 29, 2023

 Today, DoorDash announced the newest cohort of its Accelerator for Local Restaurants composed of 13 local restaurant owners based from Harlem to Hollis.

This is part of a larger cohort of 20 New York City and New Jersey-area restaurants. In partnership with Accion Opportunity Fund, The Five-Borough Chamber Alliance, and DeliverZero, DoorDash is proud to welcome the New York City cohort to help increase access to opportunity for small businesses, including those owned by women, immigrants, and people of color.

As members of the second New York City cohort of the Accelerator for Local Restaurants program, these small business owners will receive $10,000 grants, an intensive eight-week training and education curriculum, one-on-one customized business advising, the opportunity to connect with other local restaurant owners, and more. 

This year, DoorDash is also partnering with DeliverZero to provide free environmentally friendly, reusable packaging to participating restaurants – the equivalent of up to six months of free packaging for each business – as they transition their businesses to a more sustainable future. 

Created in partnership with Accion Opportunity Fund, the Accelerator for Local Restaurants is a key part of DoorDash’s broader commitment to support local businesses, especially those owned by women, immigrants, and people of color. 

“We’re excited to introduce the new cohorts of DoorDash’s Accelerator for Local Restaurants, all based in New York City and New Jersey. The participants represent a diverse cohort of restaurateurs and business owners, reflecting New Jersey and New York City’s vibrant, multicultural communities and cuisines,” said Esther Ladipo, Associate Manager, Social Impact at DoorDash. “We’re proud to partner with the Accion Opportunity Fund, DeliverZero, the Statewide Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey, and The Five-Borough Chamber Alliance to empower local economies and look forward to helping our newest cohort grow their knowledge, invest in their business, and transition toward more sustainable business practices, which will benefit local New York City and New Jersey communities.”

“Economic challenges like inflation have made it difficult for New York City area restaurants to manage day-to-day operations, making sustainable resources crucial,” said Lisa Sorin, President, the Bronx Chamber of Commerce (on behalf of the Five Borough Chamber Alliance). “We are excited to formally kick off our partnership with DoorDash through today’s announcement of the 13 New York City-based restaurants chosen as part of the Accelerator for Local Restaurants program. Small businesses are the backbone of our communities and we look forward to seeing these local restaurants grow and expand through this innovative program.” 

“Small businesses and restaurants are essential to our local communities, but many of the entrepreneurs who operate these community anchors lack access to the capital and resources necessary to scale and grow their businesses,” said Meredith Medlin Dooley, Senior Director of Business Education Programs at Accion Opportunity Fund. “The Accelerator for Local Restaurants program is an effective way to provide business education and support to entrepreneurs who are people of color, women, and those with low-to-moderate income. We are thrilled to expand our partnership with DoorDash to bring this critical resource to small business owners in the greater New York metro area as we work toward creating a more inclusive and sustainable business ecosystem for all.”

“In 2021, Dear Mama was selected as one of the inaugural participants of DoorDash’s Accelerator for Local Restaurants. We received financial support and specialized educational resources that enabled us to not only stay afloat during the pandemic, but to adapt and grow our business,” said Zachary Sharaga, past Accelerator for Local Restaurants participant, speaker for the 2023 New York City and New Jersey cohort, and Founder and Owner of New York City-based Dear Mama Coffee. “Today, we are still benefiting from our experience and I’m excited that the Accelerator for Local Restaurants is coming back to New York City and reaching our neighbors across the Hudson River in parts of New Jersey for the first time. I’m proud to have been a member of the first Accelerator cohort and know this experience will empower the New York City and New Jersey cohorts to reach new  levels of growth and success.”

More than 150 restaurateurs from 8 cities have completed the Accelerator for Local Restaurants through local cohorts in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles, New York City, Philadelphia, and Portland guided by some of the industry’s most recognized entrepreneurs and chefs.

The majority of restaurant owners participating in the Accelerator For Local Restaurants cohorts have identified as immigrants, women, or people of color.

The selected participants of the New York City cohort include: 

  • Caridad Restaurant
  • Da Claudio
  • L’arte della Pizza Brooklyn
  • Lakou Cafe
  • Lighthouse
  • Little Chef Little Cafe
  • Mad Juicy
  • Mr Mista Oh LLC
  • Multisweet LIC
  • Someday Bar
  • thecradlenyc llc
  • Ungaro Coal Fired Pizza Cafe

The Accelerator for Local Restaurants participants gathered for an announcement reception on June 29 with representatives from DoorDash, the Accion Opportunity Fund, DeliverZero, The Five-Borough Chamber Alliance, and the Statewide Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey.


DoorDash is a technology company that connects consumers with their favorite local businesses in more than 25 countries across the globe.

Founded in 2013, DoorDash builds products and services to help businesses innovate, grow, and reach more customers. DoorDash is building infrastructure for local commerce, enabling merchants to thrive in the convenience economy, giving consumers access to more of their communities, and providing work that empowers them. With DoorDash, there is a neighborhood of goods in every order.

The Five-Borough Chamber Alliance 

The Five Chamber Alliance, the economic development arm of each NYC borough, connects small business owners to resources to help them sustain their businesses and help their communities thrive.

The Alliance assists businesses in developing comprehensive marketing and communication tools, and to develop and grow their business by use of technology.


DeliverZero is a network of returnable, reusable food containers, making it easy for restaurants, delivery platforms, and POS systems to offer customers the option to receive takeout and delivery without a side of trash.

Accion Opportunity Fund

Accion Opportunity Fund works to create an inclusive, healthy financial system that supports the nation’s small business owners by connecting entrepreneurs to affordable capital, educational resources, coaching, and networks.

Through innovative partnerships and outreach strategies, we reach entrepreneurs of color, low-income entrepreneurs, and women, who often lack access to the financial services they need to build and grow their businesses.

Accion Opportunity Fund Community Development is the lending arm of Accion Opportunity Fund, California Finance Lender license #6050609. Visit the organization at to learn more about its business growth resources and funding opportunities.

Photo credit: 1-2) Source.

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