Bon Jovi is very well known for his career in music. And blessing us with music is not the only thing he does to make this world a better place for everyone to live. In 2006, he founded The Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation which aims to support community efforts to break the cycle of poverty and homelessness. And one of the major steps taken by the foundation was opening JBJ Soul Kitchen, the community restaurant where people in need are allowed to have meals for free.
The first restaurant was opened in October 2011, in the Red Bank area, New Jersey. They opened the second one in 2016 near Toms River, an area hugely affected by Hurricane Sandy in 2012.
The aim of both restaurants is to fight food insecurity in a dignifying way. They welcome both paying and in-need customers. They do not have prices on the menu. Those who can afford a meal are encouraged to donate $20, and those who can’t offer any payment are encouraged to volunteer at the restaurant.
JBJ Soul Kitchen has already served over 105,893 meals. The restaurant’s website suggests that 54% of those meals were paid for with donations while the rest 46% were earned through volunteering.
The restaurant does not require pre-reservations. They work under the first-come-first-served principle, however, people who are struggling financially are given priority.
The restaurant menu consists of 3 courses inspired by local American cuisine. JBJ Soul Kitchen does everything in their power to make sure that their meals are both delicious and nutritious; what they use is organically grown in the restaurant’s garden.
On January 21, 2019, the restaurant offered free meals to government workers and family members who were affected by the federal government shutdown.
People online fell in love with the idea. And this is how they reacted.
So what do you think of this restaurant idea? Isn’t it amazing? How great would it be if there were such restaurants in your area too?