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San Antonio restaurant pros doing volunteer work as part of the Campari Day of Service 

click image Bar pros who signed up to volunteer their time to Campari's annual National Day of Service received a t-shirt and commemorative pin. - INSTAGRAM /  ZAC90210
  • Instagram / zac90210
  • Bar pros who signed up to volunteer their time to Campari's annual National Day of Service received a t-shirt and commemorative pin.
Campari has teamed up with the United States Bartender’s Guild National Charity Foundation to hold the third annual National Day of Service on Tuesday, a 24-hour window where bar and restaurant professionals join each other in community service efforts across the nation.

San Antonio’s Day of Service team is helmed by Karen Tartt, craft bartender and migraine-safe cocktail pioneer with a special tie to this year’s local beneficiary, the Saint City Culinary Foundation, and its mental health resource, Heard. Heard, put simply, is a mental health support and wellness resource offered specifically to individuals in the hospitality industry.

“When I was diagnosed with a chronic illness called vestibular migraine, the people I met at Heard helped me get through some pretty tough moments ... dealing with employers who were not understanding of my illness,” Tartt told the Current. “As a career bartender with a chronic illness, the lack of affordable healthcare for service industry folks is a topic I am passionate and speak openly about.”

It’s no secret that anxiety, depression, and substance abuse issues are rampant throughout the industry in normal circumstances, but as the COVID-19 pandemic forces more restaurants to close and puts millions out of work, things are more serious than ever.

For the Day of Service activity, Tartt is overseeing more than 20 SA bar professionals as they complete hours of community service work on behalf of Saint City for VocaliD, an organization that aims to create custom voices for those living with speechlessness due to illnesses like Tourette syndrome.

“We wouldn't dream of fitting a young girl with the prosthetic limb of a grown man," VocaliD Founder Rupal Patel explained in a talk at TEDWomen 2013. "So, why then the same prosthetic voice?"

VocaliD’s text-to-speech technology creates custom synthetic personalities using crowdsourced voices so that individuals living with speechlessness can be heard in a voice that is uniquely theirs.

Tartt says she’s proud of the group of San Antonians that offered their time, energy and voices to this year’s cause.

“Thank you so much to the 25 people who signed up to be on my team and help out virtually by donating their recorded voices with VocaliD,” she said. “I’m very happy to highlight and give back to these organizations that have done so much for me.”

So many restaurants, so little time. Find out the latest San Antonio dining news with our Flavor Friday Newsletter.

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