Operation BBQ Relief provides the ‘healing power of barbecue’

April 20, 2023 By    

Stan Hays, the co-founder and CEO of Operation BBQ Relief, delivered a heartfelt overview of the nonprofit organization during the National Propane Gas Association’s winter meetings in New Orleans.

Photo of Stan Hays, co-founder and CEO of Operation BBQ Relief

Stan Hays, co-founder and CEO of Operation BBQ Relief. (Photo: LP Gas staff)

Operation BBQ Relief was founded in May 2011 during tornado relief efforts in Joplin, Missouri. Competitive pitmasters from nine states answered the call to feed displaced families and first responders; they served over 120,000 meals in a 13-day period.

Since its founding, Operation BBQ Relief has provided over 10 million meals throughout the U.S. and internationally following natural disasters, COVID-19 response and through The Always Serving Project, benefiting the homeless, first responders, veterans and members of the military.

Hays says the “healing power of barbecue” comforts people in their time of loss and chaos.

“I got to witness what a pulled pork sandwich means to somebody who breaks down in tears for having a hot meal,” Hays says. “We all take it for granted.” 

He encourages everyone to volunteer, donate to the cause or share about the network on social media. 

Ferrellgas and Blue Rhino help sponsor the effort.

At the NPGA meeting in New Orleans, Hays also joined an emergency preparedness panel discussion focused on how to protect propane industry businesses against natural disasters and other emergencies.

About the Author:

Brian Richesson is the editor in chief of LP Gas Magazine. Contact him at brichesson@northcoastmedia.net or 216-706-3748.

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