Café Momentum is not just a trendy place to eat. It is a non-profit restaurant that supports local farms and gives paid internships to men and women coming out of juvenile justice detention.
This is a one-of-a-kind place. Interns work at least 3 days a week in a highly structured environment and learn 13 competencies. They are trained by professional chefs and experience all aspects of a restaurant from prep, line service, dish pit, cooking and busing tables. During their 1-year internship, they learn life skills and get things we may take for granted like a social security card, a state ID, and medical checkups.
The program provides them stability, counseling, case management and basic and urgent needs care. The mentors at Café Momentum report seeing growth in self-efficiency, work-readiness and emotional intelligence in the young adults. 469 interns have gone through the program with a recidivism rate of 15%. The average recidivism rate for Dallas County is 48%.
Much of Café Momentum’s produce, herbs, chickens and goat milk which is turned into cheese comes from Bonton Farms. Currently, the menu features a Bonton Beet Salad. Bonton Farms is only 15 miles away. The story of Bonton Farms is as powerful as Café Momentum’s story: www.bontonfarms.org
Other local farms including Paul Quinn’s We Over Me Farm, Raindrop Farms, Happy Trails Farm, Houski Farms also supply fresh, farm to table ingredients. “Utilizing locally grown produce sends a direct message to your guests about the high level of integrity you uphold for the food you prepare them. It ultimately expresses how much you care.” Chad Houser, Founder, CEO, Executive Chef, Café Momentum
How can you help? It’s simple. Eat there. When you eat at Café Momentum, the young people put everything they’ve learned into practice and can refine their skills. You also support farm to table and the local Dallas economy.
Here’s a beautiful story about one young man’s journey from crime to Café Momentum:
Café Momentum serves sophisticated American cuisine in the heart of downtown Dallas. It is open Thursday – Saturday from 5:30 PM – 11:00 PM at 1510 Pacific Avenue which is at corner of Pacific Avenue and Akard Street across from Thanksgiving Square.
Find out more at http://cafemomentum.org/