Since the pandemic started, people have relied more and more on food delivery drivers to bring them their favorite meals during dark times. But for as much as we use these services, the drivers themselves often only take home paltry earnings. Now, one delivery driver is speaking up and begging customers to tip their drivers, lest they themselves go hungry.

A tearful Riley Elliot shared an emotional video from his car, explaining that he had to pay $3 for parking because a customer wouldn’t come out to meet him to take their food. Then, the customer only tipped $1.50, which was barely anything, even combined with the small amount of money that Riley earned from the company itself.

@livefreestudios

TIP YOUR DELIVERY FOLKS! ##ubereatsdriver ##notips ##pandemic ##homeless ##helpme ##fyp ##deliverydriver ##delivery

♬ original sound – Riley Elliot

This story has a happy ending, though — at least for Riley. Since his video went viral on TikTok, viewers around the world teamed up to donate to the Venmo listed on his TikTok profile. He told TODAY that the amount of money he received was about $55,000.

Now, Riley is paying it forward to help other delivery drivers who are struggling to make ends meet. He’s since started a GoFundMe that promises to donate all funds to other gig economy workers who are paid too little by the companies they work for, most of which don’t even offer healthcare benefits to their contracted workers. So far, the GoFundMe has raised nearly $22,000 for the cause, and Riley has promised to donate all of the money to workers in need.

While happy endings like this come from sad stories that shouldn’t be happening in the first place, it’s always refreshing to know that so many people can come together to help others in need, even in the most difficult of times.

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