I was talking to someone a few days back about a local restaurant that operates completely on a volunteer and donation basis. Neither of could remember who or where it was, but we both agreed it wasn’t the weekly Hare Krishna buffet on 14th Avenue.

Then a day later I heard about the one year anniversary of SAME Cafe on Colorado Matters, a local affairs show produced by Colorado Public Radio.

Owners Brad and Libby of SAME – which stands for “So All May Eat” tell Brian Warner of Colorado Matters they have three to four volunteers a day, more on weekends, and about 30 per week on and off. Each day they prepare food for locals and the needy alike. Normally those hungering for a substantial meal find themselves waiting in long lines or going to a shelter – but here they are able to enjoy a meal in a normal restaurant setting and interact and associate with others – rather than processing themselves through an assembly line.

Libby says many people that frequent the restaurant aren’t necessarily homeless or living on the streets, but people working multiple jobs yet still struggling to make ends meet. Often those working multiple jobs are eating the least nutritious meals – relying on fast food and convenience store fare – so SAME Cafe is a healthy alternative to eat and socialize. My only wish for them is that they would extend their weekday hours into the evening, or gain enough helping hands to be open from 4pm – 8pm in addition to their four hour midday block.

SAME cafe is at 2023 East Colfax. Open for lunch Tuesday through Friday, and Saturdays from 11 to 8pm.

They were featured in the Rocky Mountain News last April.  Their blog has menu rotations and community issues. If anyone has visited this place or volunteered please share your experiences!

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