Be Our Guest!
“When people think of a soup kitchen, they typically think of waiting in a long line for a bowl of soup and a piece of bread. At Samaritan Café, we are anything but that!” says Elisa Pulido, Café Coordinator. “Our goal is to treat everyone as a guest, just as you would if they were dining in your home.”
Samaritan Café is open to the general public in both our Rogers and Springdale centers and serves FREE hot meals in a restaurant-style setting – meaning our clients are seated at tables and served their meals by caring (and smiling!) volunteers who often take time just to sit and visit with familiar faces. Our desire is to provide a delicious meal in a caring environment and have found that, for many, it is a great place to escape the heat of a hot summer day or the cold of a chilly winter one.
In response to the growing crisis and connection between poverty and obesity, Samaritan Café has developed a Healthy Foods Initiative that focuses on improving the overall nutritional quality of the meals we serve. Fresh organic produce is harvested daily from Samaritan Garden (during growing season) to provide fresh salads and vegetables, and dessert is often fruit or yogurt. Our Café also offers nutrition/cooking classes six times each year to promote healthy eating habits for clients, and for our clients’ families to adopt at home.
“We see our Healthy Foods Initiative as being a food justice issue,” says Debbie Rambo, Executive Director. “We believe that we are not only called to feed the hungry but to provide them with healthiest food possible within our financial parameters. By making quality choices, we not only model for our clients, we also show them that they are persons of worth and deserve those choices.”