La Principal’s Taco Tuesday For A Cause aims to help the Evanston community


Harrison Tremarello/The Daily Northwestern

La Principal is giving back to the Evanston community through its Taco Tuesday for a Cause to help residents struggling due to the pandemic.

Skye Swann, Reporter

Evanston’s La Principal is putting a philanthropic spin on Taco Tuesday by donating half of its proceeds to local nonprofits helping residents who are struggling due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We’re really focusing on organizations who are really making a difference to help the community,” owner Eric Young said.

La Principal started Taco Tuesday for a Cause in 2017 to support activist efforts that gained traction after the inauguration of former President Donald Trump. Young said when the restaurant first introduced the initiative, the community response was overwhelming. On the first day, they sold 1200 tacos and donated $1200 to local charities.  

From there, La Principal continued to donate its Taco Tuesday sales to local soup kitchens and homeless shelters.

When COVID-19 hit, the restaurant had to close due to stay-at-home orders — consequently, the Tuesday initiative stopped.

Upon reopening the restaurant for carry-out, Young decided to restart the initiative to help residents struggling because of the pandemic.

“We just realized there are a lot of organizations and folks who need a hand so we found a way to bring Taco Tuesday back the first Tuesday of each month,” Young said.

Last month, La Principal donated $2,500 to the Jackson family, whose apartment caught on fire on Dec. 23. In the midst of the pandemic and Evanston winter, the family was struggling to receive community donations, and La Principal’s support helped them get back on their feet.

Ivette Camarano, whose sister’s family lost their apartment, said the restaurant’s donation to her family was generous.

“These are businesses that really, really care about the community,” Camarano said. “Eric is a genuine person, very down to earth and always wanting to help.”

On Dec. 1 of last year, La Principal held their monthly Taco Tuesday event to raise money for Connections for the Homeless, an Evanston-based organization helping residents who struggle with food and housing insecurity.

Volunteer manager Hail Khalaf said the organization partners with local restaurants such as La Principal to deliver three meals a day to people in need.

“We ended up partnering with La Principal the past summer for delivering meals to our residents,” Khalaf said. “This week’s Taco Tuesday event helped deliver food to 60 individuals in 28 households.”

Young said La Principal wants to give back to the Evanston community, who has helped keep the restaurant’s doors open during the pandemic.

Despite La Principal being financially hit by the pandemic, Young said the restaurant will continue their philanthropic work on the first Tuesday of every month.

“We see a lot more people coming out to support the cause,” Young said. “We’re doing it for the greater good of Evanston and the greater good of the community.”

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @sswann301

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