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One World Everybody Eats: local version?

January 3rd, 2007 · 4 Comments

A recent article in Time magazine titled Where ‘Check Please’ Is Your Call introduced me to the One World Everybody Eats foundation. From their website:

The One World Everybody Eats foundation is an outgrowth of One World Cafe in Salt Lake City, Utah. The cafe began with an epiphany by owner Denise Cerreta in mid 2003 to begin feeding people. With no experience in the restaurant business, she started with sandwiches and coffee at a small, downtown location. About 9 months later, she expanded her offerings to an all-organic fare with the help of excellent staff. Since then, she’s gained local, national and world-wide notoriety for her pay as you go prices, no menus, a living wage, minimum food waste and healthy meals all for community benefit.

The idea that clients eat what they can, choosing selection and sizes from healthy organic dishes, and then pay what they can resonates with me. I have been concerned about hunger and my most recent employment, prior to motherhood, was at a non-profit that offered food, shelter and other services to the needy. While living on Bainbridge Island, I have considered starting a baked goods catering company and donating the profits to charity. The island could be an excellent place to start a restaurant/non-profit and the “pay what you can” would help offset the increased cost of living here. I’d love to be involved in an organization such as One World Everybody Eats and I’m wondering if anyone here in the Northwest knows of any similar local ventures. I hope the Time article encourages others to consider starting and giving this gift to the community.

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4 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Lucy // Jan 3, 2007 at 8:38 am

    What an absolutely fascinating idea! Hmmm. I suppose lots would depend on availability of local organics and willingness/ability of local patrons to support the endeavor.

    Here (in the rural midwest) I’m continually shocked at the breadth and depth of poverty. (And I’m not easily shocked, growing up in Appalachia) People here are neither willing nor able to support such a concept.

    I’ve never lived somewhere before where I have to convince grown-ups to try vegetables. They’ve just never eaten many fresh veggies and fruits before because they were raised on cheap carbs and frozen stuff.

    Lot of people think “rural” and envision lush green farms full of lovely organic produce. But the soil here is … pure beige. Beige rock. I don’t see how they grow much of anything at all. And its that way mile upon mile upon mile.

    I suspect I’m going to become TheComposter when we move in a few weeks. (Ya know its all about marketing, so I’m trying to convince my sci-fi-loving husband that its really a kind of terra-forming. Just like we’re space-explorers in a hostile environment!)

  • 2 Wendy // Jan 8, 2007 at 3:05 pm

    I think you have a great idea and how wonderful of that Utah woman. That kind of cafe is something I’ve never heard of before. I have worked in a San Francisco church’s kitchen preparing lunches to give away, and it was a huge endeavor. People I know on the island are always interested in finding a worthy cause to support. I could not believe the news that a food bank had been robbed in Seattle (I can’t recall where exactly). Food is such a basic need, and so many take it for granted or assume that because they are covered, so is everyone else.

  • 3 Freedom Girl // Jan 10, 2007 at 7:46 am

    What a wonderful idea! And I think BI would be a perfect place for it…people over estimate the wealth on the island, dramatically.

  • 4 isabella mori // Jan 15, 2007 at 12:59 pm

    a very interesting idea. i’m going to meet with a friend from an inner city mission next week; would be interesting to see what they’d think of that, perhaps as a fundraising route. thanks for telling us about this!

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