I'm having one of those moments when I get a little mushy and glowy about my town and how great and special it is. Mind you, never in my imagination would I have dreamt of saying this about a place in New Jersey. But, it is true, I live in one of the better places I have found in all my travels. Of course, much of this is due to the fact that we've settled in here as a family and that has opened us up to different kinds of experiences and worlds. But, another part of it are things like this new cafe.
A Better World Cafe serves local, organic food most of it grown within a 50 mile radius with fair trade coffees and teas. None of the food is served in or on anything disposable and in order to reduce food waste you pick your own portions. The cafe also hopes to bring good, environmentally-friendly, healthy food to as many people as possible by offering a free meal option and the possibility to work for one hour in the cafe in exchange for a meal. As if all of that weren't enough, it is run by a non-profit organization that runs a culinary school and job training program for low-income folks. I know, a million great things at once. It is currently operating, lunch-only, out of the quilt room in our church but the hope is to spin it off to its own location when it builds support. The social justice mission at our church is really strong, we've built housing for foster kids, supported the development of a Ten Thousand Villages store, and have lots of other ideas brewing. It's the kind of stuff that makes someone ambivalent about organized religion (like me) start getting active in a church. Another thing I never dreamt of saying.
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