06 February 2011

Healthy World Cafe offers unusual business model

Healthy World Cafe hopes to provide
meals made with food from local producers.
by Deron Schriver

The United States Department of Agriculture estimated in 2008 that 49.1 million people were living in food insecure households, meaning those people reported insufficient access to food necessary to lead an active, healthy life. At the same time, many studies estimate that 40-50 percent of all food available for harvest is wasted. Obesity is considered by many to be the top public health crisis of the 21st century, with almost a third of the population meeting that classification.

What if one not-for-profit organization was created to address all of those issues and more, at the local level? Good news is on the horizon.

Healthy World Café is a not-for-profit restaurant developed by a group of dedicated community members coming to York in the near future. The business model includes allowing patrons to choose their portion size and pay what they feel is fair (although there will be suggested prices to be used as a guide). Those that cannot afford to pay will be given the opportunity to volunteer an hour of their time in exchange for a healthy meal. The Café will serve only healthy meals, and part of the Café’s mission will be to rely heavily on food obtained from local producers. It will strive to be a gathering place for people of all backgrounds, and it hopes to partner with other local efforts aimed at improving the future of the York community.

Healthy World Café is modeled after similar restaurant projects in other cities, including Denver; Spokane, Wash.; and Salt Lake City.

The organization’s Guiding Committee is finalizing the business plan and is seeking community input. A prime site in downtown York has been identified, but it will require funding before any commitments can be made. Please visit http://www.healthyworldcafe.org/ or follow us on Twitter and Facebook to learn more or contact us at healthyworldcafe@gmail.com. You won’t find a better return on the investment of your tax-deductible donation or your volunteer time.

Deron Schriver is the executive administrator for The Women's Healthcare Group and a member of the Guiding Committee for Healthy World Café.  He has a particular interest in studying and participating in solutions to address health issues affecting our society. Deron earned a bachelor's degree in accounting and a master's in business administration, both from York College.  He lives in West Manchester Township with his wife, Lisa.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I hope Healthy World Cafe will be open on Sundays so that after church lunchers can visit. What a great idea!