DENVER — A pay-what-you-can cafe is continuing to serve new faces after having a record year driven by economic hardship during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The SAME Cafe, which stands for "So All May Eat," has given back to the community countless times, but now it was the community's turn to give back to this nonprofit eatery.
Denver7 Gives surprised Executive Director Brad Reubendale by presenting the cafe with a check for $5,000. The generous gift was made possible by donations from viewers.
"This means so much because it means that you believe it what we’re doing, it means that we can do more in our community," said Reubendale.
At the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the cafe quickly pivoted to a carry out model and began serving customers from its patio. When Denver7 profiled SAME Cafe in March 2020 the restaurant just had its busiest day ever.
Click here to go directly to the Denver7 Gives donation form then choose a campaign
"As restaurants were shutting down, we were ramping up because we had to. The need was greater and we’re a mission-based organization; that’s why we exist," said Reubendale.
Reubendale, his staff and volunteers served more than 28,000 meals last year compared with 20,000 meals served during 2019. He said about 90% of guests are experiencing some kind of challenge, and many of those challenges are related to the pandemic.
“This space allows folks to be generous and it’s just so exciting to see people continue to be generous even after a year that we just had," said Theresa Marten, Director for the SAME Cafe.
Denver7 features the stories of people who need help and now you can help them with a cash donation through Denver7 Gives. One hundred percent of contributions to the fund will be used to help people in our local community.