Stories of Kindness from Around the World

Cafe of Love

--by dotrut2001, posted Dec 1, 2009

In the early 80's, I was introduced by a homeless lady named Rosie to a little café in Portland, Oregon.

I had taken Rosie for coffee or food many times in the months I had known her.  This day she insisted she was taking me to lunch.

We walked from the hotel where I worked to a little cafe on Davis Street.  I was franctic, knowing she had no money, and I did not want to hurt her feeling by offering to pay yet again.

The cafe was filled with people, all of them smiling, even the workers.  Rosie told me to sit and drink coffee while she worked for her lunch.  After about 20 minutes, she paid for one meal and we sat enjoying the best vegetarian chili and cornbread I had ever eaten.  She explained to me that the café let you work for a meal if you had no money, or would give you a free meal if you were not able to work.  She also explained that the workers were all volunteers.

Well, this morning I was thinking of all the visits I paid that café over the years and out of curiosity, I surfed the internet  for them.  To my joy and amazement they are still open.  Doing the great work of feeding the homeless and hungry, as well as helping in many other ways.

I am not sure if I should put their name on here or not, but I can tell you this is a work of love by the founder Genny.  Wouldn't it me wonderful if every city had a place like this?

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Readers Comments

Frank wrote: What a great story. I wish we had one of these in my area. Really motivates me to go out and see what we have avalable for our people where i live.

I'm sad to report though, that genny, the founder, retired from the cafe this month after 30 years of running the cafe. I'm sure they will continue in her good name.
Debra wrote: There is a cafe like this in denver called same. It is on colfax ave, the heart and hub of homeless life in denver. You get your meal, and can pay by leaving whatever donation you want, or not, or by working in the cafe. Please support them in denver.
nisha wrote: Knowing such a place exists brings cheers and tears. Thank you for sharing this wonderful story.
ashley wrote: Hi, i'm working on a school project and was wondering if i could use this story as party of my "inspiration" project?
WitchDust wrote: If i can see through my tears here. I just wanted to say how beautiful a moment the two of you shared that day. Yes indeed, a world where every city had a place like this would be a lovely place to live. Happy holidays my dear!
Erinne wrote: Sisters of the road is such a special place. Thanks for the wonderful memories!
Richard wrote: Thank you for the wonderful story! Sisters of the road is indeed a place of love, dignity, and family. You can learn more at
Www. Sistersoftheroad. Org
bluebell wrote: It sure would be lovely to have places like that. Love and Light, Bluebell
lmil1954 wrote: Amen to that!!!!!!!
Love, Linda:)
FairyBubbles wrote: I am just sitting here trying to imagine a world like that - I am smiling.

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