Empty your pockets for the Mission

Following the damage earlier this week in the Mission, various groups have begun collecting donations for those affected. With more than three dozen businesses and vehicles vandalized, protesters caused thousands of dollars in estimated damage.

Monday night, protesters rampaged through the Mission smashing windows, breaking things and throwing paint bombs at everything from buildings to vehicles. Even Mission Police Station got trashed.

Ultimately, only one person was arrested on vehicle code violations and resisting arrest and was later released, according to police.

In an ironic twist, Wells Fargo has come forward with a $25,000 donation to help small businesses that were vandalized earlier this week. Michael Billeci, president of the bank’s San Francisco Bay region, said in a statement:

“As San Francisco’s hometown bank, Wells Fargo is passionate about supporting the communities where we live and work, and it’s important to help our local merchants make the repairs they need to reopen for business.”

Other fundraising efforts for small businesses along Valencia Street have been started by groups like WePay, a Palo Alto-based company that allows users to raise money via crowdsourcing on its website.  As of Thursday morning, more than $6,000 had already been raised to meet their $7,000 goal.

Among the angry Mission residents, Rush Jones, said he was frustrated with the protesters for seemingly targeting small businesses:

“There’s a fine line between vandalism and having a cause. I don’t think they achieved anything at all. Mom and pop shops … are hard enough to get going in San Francisco.”

And while no one would wish this violence on any store, Bar Tartine’s general manager, Vinny Eng, told Mission Local that this gives neighboring businesses a chance to support each other more:

“I think that many of the small businesses are in better dialogue with each other now.”