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Community Café Business Plan
Knead Community Cafe, in downtown New Kensington, will offer healthy dining selections using fresh, locally sourced, minimally processed ingredients, in a setting where patrons can enjoy nutritious eating regardless of one’s ability to pay. It is our hope that the café will promote a sense of shared concern for our neighbors and given the opportunity to break bread together, a stronger community can be forged in many ways.
As a charitable 501 (c) (3) organization the Knead Café is a nonprofit social enterprise.
The café’s downtown location borders an economically distressed area of the city of New Kensington. According to the latest census data, some of New Kensington / Arnold neighborhoods are among the poorest in the entire state of Pennsylvania. Two major features of the café are its adaptable changing menu, based on sustainable seasonal foods, and flexible pricing options which make it affordable for all people. A pay-what-you-can system, which includes the option of volunteering in exchange for a meal, creates a supportive dining climate where all will be treated with dignity in a non judgmental environment. The café is modeled on a concept that was started by an organization called One World Everybody Eats and has been replicated in other cities around the country. Patron control over selections and portions leads to a situation in which little waste is generated. Patrons cooperatively participate in determining a fair price for their meal. If the minimum price cannot be paid, the opportunity to work for your meal will be available. The majority of the café workers will be community volunteers so that the number of paid staff can be minimized thus reducing operation costs. Pay rates for the paid employees will be at a livable wage. The café will operate on a regular basis 5 days per week for lunch time meals. There will be times when the café is open on evenings or weekends for special events and fund-raising efforts. It is the hope of Knead Community Café that 70% of its daily operating expenses will be met by customers who pay for their meal. The remainder of the budget will be funded by ongoing fund-raising efforts of the community involved with the café.
II. Mission Statement
To create an inviting community space where all are welcome. To offer well prepared meals using healthy ingredients, sustainable and fresh whole foods as much as possible. To make this dining opportunity available to everyone by using the “Pay-What-You Can” model which encourages everyone to eat a delicious and nutritious meal regardless of means.
• To provide wholesome, nourishing and delectable meals available to all inadvertent of cost. • Partnering with local chefs to bring creative healthy meals to the public.
• To reduce food waste and eliminate food insecurity in the local community
• Becoming a vital community partner by providing a comfortable environment and sharing hospitality with everyone.
• To open our café to other community partners as a means for fundraising through dining, with the same goal in mind; giving back to those who need.
• To encourage charitable giving by providing community benefactors the opportunity to assist neighbors by paying forward as well as allowing patrons to volunteer in exchange for their meal.
• Have a working kitchen that trains volunteers in a restaurant environment so that individuals can gain the necessary skills to seek employment in the food industry.
• To strive to be green and minimize our carbon footprint through recycling and reducing food waste.
III. Business Description
Knead Community Cafe is dedicated to alleviating food insecurity and promoting a healthy community in New Kensington / Arnold. KCC will be a place where the public can gather for a healthy, high quality meal, asking only that you pay the minimum price or volunteer at the café to pay for your meal. KCC will give all guests a comfortable, relaxed environment in which to enjoy their meal. Knead Community Cafe is where families and community can come together to enjoy a meal with new or old friends. KCC is dedicated to removing social stigmas of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, education, disability, or anything else that makes us different from others. KCC will be about bringing the community together.
KCC will only have 2 paid staff initially and the rest will be volunteers to handle day to day operations. The Café will also provide training in food preparation and handling skills for select volunteers to take with them into other areas of the food service industry. The paid employees will be paid a living wage, and will be treated fairly and valued as partners who make a significant impact on the community. This concept has been tested and proven successful. There are 50+ existing cafes currently in operation with another 20+ in some stage of development planning to open nationally and now worldwide. The main mission of OWEE is to provide support, technical help, and peer mentoring to assist café operators succeed utilizing the pay as you can model. Members of the Knead Community Café core group have partnered with OWEE and have received a wealth of information and insight that will assist in getting the KCC café up and running.
IV. Products and Services
The food served at Knead Community Cafe will be nutritious, healthy, and tasty. KCC will use the Pay-What-You-Can- or the option to volunteer in exchange for a meal to demonstrate to patrons the fact that there is enough food for all. Since KCC is a nonprofit the focus can be on delivering nutritious, healthy, tasty food without being motivated by profit.
Knead Community Café offers food that is:
· fresh food, prepared in small batches
· minimally processed, seasonal foods
· locally-grown fruits and vegetables, whenever possible
· antibiotic-free and hormone-free meat and dairy when possible
· served in great variety, with recipes from many cultures
· vegan, gluten, and dairy free options when possible
· in self-selected portion sizes, helping to reduce food waste
KCC will hire a full time chef who will be compensated from the monthly budget. Occasionally, KCC hopes to have guest Chef’s work in the café and help with special events for fundraising purposes through the meals prepared in the cafe. Knead Community Café will be open Monday thru Friday, from 11 am until 2pm. During the week KCC will be open for lunch only. For special events the Café may open for an evening or weekend meal.
We are currently in a capital campaign to raise $350,000 for renovations. We know that or restaurant will be serving a great need in our community. But, It is also our hope that our cafe will be a spark for redevelopment in downtown New Kensington.
Nov 28 2016Organization
Knead Community CafeProduct Stage
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