Pay What You Can
Story by Leola Daul
Photography by Heart-n-Soul Community Café Volunteers
Heart-n-Soul Community Café Mission: We are committed to addressing food insecurities, building community and providing delicious food to nurture body, heart, and soul.
Heart-n-Soul Community Café Mission
We are a nonprofit, social entrepreneurship that serves locally grown fresh food and operates under a pay-what-you-can model. We value a place where everyone is welcome and provide creative payment solutions for all.
Since our first café in June of 2016, we have continued to grow in cafes, volunteers, partners, and most importantly, community members served. We believe that everyone, regardless of economic status, deserves the chance to eat healthy food with dignity. We have no prices on our menu.
The “pay what you can” pricing model used by the café gives individuals and families who may be experiencing chronic, seasonal, or temporary food insecurity an opportunity to enjoy a local and nutritious meal with a price that is affordable to them.
“Pay what you can” options include:
Community partnerships and volunteers are the heart and soul of the café!
We rely on community members to share their talents and we utilize volunteers to the greatest extent possible to serve our community a delicious meal. Some examples of volunteers who have reached out to Heart-n-Soul Community Café to serve and who have donated their time include college students, service groups, faith communities, businesses and local chefs.
Our pop-up cafés were suspended in March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In April 2020, we started preparing sack lunches for community members who didn’t have access to a weekend meal due to the pandemic. Heart-n-Soul Community Café Lunch Bunch has been funded through generous donations from community members and businesses and grants. A grant from Beyond Shelter, Inc. and FM Area Foundation Covid Relief helped to fund lunches when we started in April 2020. We were able to continue the lunches through fall with the help of a fundraising campaign by Lunch Aid North Dakota.
Our April 2021 lunches are being funded with help from the United Way of Cass Clay.
Since April of 2020 we have prepared over 20,000 lunches for community members to have a meal for the weekend.
ND Hunger Free 2.0 reported since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Great Plains Food Bank has learned their clients who were receiving food assistance also reported the following issues: chronic disease/health conditions (44%); affordable housing (43%); lack of transportation (40%); poverty (35%); lack of available housing (27%); quality housing (24%). In addition, nearly half of clients make the difficult choice between paying for food and paying for gas for their car. Great Plains Food Bank has seen a 45% increase in the need for food in our community since the start of the pandemic.
We also include a greeting card in each lunch so lunch recipients can have a connection with someone, and to bring a little cheer to their day.
How can you help:
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