OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) --One Oakland restaurant owner is paying it forward this month.
Chef extraordinaire James Syhabout is donating a percentage of his sales to Oakland public schools and he's hoping other restaurant owners will follow.
James Syhabout is an Oakland native who graduated from Oakland Tech High School.
"I went to Oakland public schools and I know how hard with with being underfunded," Syhabout said.
The chef and owner of three restaurants will donate five percent of a customer's bill to the Oakland Public Education Fund. The money will then be distributed among all Oakland schools.
"Art programs, science programs, or music programs. We think these funds will be helpful in supporting more schools to be able to do that," Brian Stanley of the Oakland Education Fund.
The three restaurants are Commis, The Dock and Hawker Fare. Last year, Syhabout raised $9,000. This campaign coincides with Oakland restaurant week, which began Thursday encouraging people to come out and help support local restaurants.
"As the city is growing, as we see with development, the economy, let's not forget the little one," Syhabout said.
Oakland residents Burt Vera Cruz and Monique Hairston especially enjoyed their lunch Thursday knowing that what they spend today will have an impact on Oakland students.
"It really builds the kind of Oakland that we want to live in, so I think it's a great thing," said Monique Hairston, an Oakland resident.
"I have a child of my own and it's good to see that businesses are caring about our youth. I really appreciate it," said Burt Vera Cruz, an Oakland resident.
Syhabout's Dine Out and Give Back fundraiser goes through the end of the month.