Our restaurant group is a small, family run business. I have called Edmonton home since 2003. I count myself lucky with how this community has embraced my cooking and the restaurants that we have created. A very important part of our philosophy since day one has centred around being a good neighbour. What does that mean to me? Well, it means doing my part to support the community that has done so much for me, and to help others who might be less fortunate.
From an early age, it was my mother who instilled in me the importance of being a good neighbour. While my upbringing was rather modest, I always had a roof over my head, clothes on my back, and a meal at the table. For my mother that meant we were blessed. It also meant that we could do our part to help others around us. This was not simply something she preached, but also something she lived by, and still lives to this day. Her generosity with her time, energy, and what money she could spare, opened my eyes to how a person could help the people of their community, no matter their place in life.
I have done my best over the years to carry those memories with me, and to do what I can. It is why giving back to the community has been a foundational part of Robert Spencer Hospitality. In fact, our very first official event at Workshop Eatery in 2015 was a fundraiser in support of Youth Empowerment and Support Services (YESS). It is why we continue to do our part to contribute to the community where we can.
Over the years I have found it nearly impossible to say no when an individual or an organization asks for our support. The unfortunate reality is that we simply cannot continue to help everyone who asks. That is why I felt it was important for us to share our charities of choice and our plan for continuing to be good neighbours, while ensuring our contributions make the most impact.
I was first introduced to the house in December of 2012. I was a relatively new dad at the time, and all it took was one visit to prepare a meal. I learned firsthand what some of these families were experiencing, and realized that this organization was something special. I felt compelled to help whenever and wherever I could. Since that day I am proud to say that we have fed hundreds of families a “home cooked meal”. Our work is one small piece in helping to alleviate the tremendous emotional, financial, and physical burdens that families face during their most difficult times. That is why our Holiday Gift Card campaign will continue to be tied to fundraising for the house. To learn more about how you can help click the link below.
Like so many Edmontonians, I was first introduced to young Ben Stelter in March of 2022. It wasn’t long before Ben’s name was synonymous with the Edmonton Oilers, and with the Kids With Cancer Society. More than just an Oilers fan, Ben made the most of his time in the spotlight, by highlighting the need to help other kids battling cancer, and to one day find a cure so that no other child had to go through what he did. After his passing his family chose to continue his work, creating the Ben Stelter Fund, raising money to grant kids with cancer wishes, to purchase life-saving equipment, and to fund research. In the spring of 2022 Ben’s family approached Woodshed Burgers to fundraise with them. We created the Ben Burger, and during the Oilers playoff run raised over $4000 for Kids With Cancer. The burger was so well received, that after Ben’s passing, with the blessing of his family, we made the Ben Burger a permanent fixture on the Woodshed menu, donating $1 from every burger sold to Kids With Cancer. In February of 2023 we made the decision to move the fundraising directly to the Ben Stelter Fund, and look forward to the longstanding relationship with this family and their noble work. Click the link below to learn more about how you can get involved.
Those of you who are close to me know that my significant other, Patrycia Rzechowka, was diagnosed with MS in 2012. Since that time she has dedicated much of her life to being an Ambassador for the MS Canada, fundraising, joining boards, speaking at conferences, offering support and guidance to newly diagnosed patients, and participating in the MS Walk and the MS Bike Tour. She has refused to let MS win and continues to fight every single day. Now, I too am in that fight with her. Since we began dating I have taken up road biking, and hounding my friends and colleagues for fundraising dollars. This has become very personal for me, and I will continue to stand beside Patrycia in her fight to END MS and to hopefully see a world free of MS. If you would like to know more about how you can help, click the link below.
These charities are, and will continue to be our charities of choice, as we look to continue our commitment to them, and make a change for good in our community.
While this doesn’t mean we will stop helping groups and initiatives that our guests are passionate about, it does mean that we will have to be more thoughtful with what we can offer.
Please click the button below for all donation inquiries. We will do our utmost to help, if we can.
Chef / Propietor