In Texas, nearly 50 percent of incarcerated juveniles will offend again. For participants in job skills programs like Cafe Momentum, that number drops to 14 percent. For Cafe Momentum in particular, it’s 11 percent.
But Cafe Momentum isn’t just a job skills program. It’s a place where nonviolent juvenile offenders can shed their “throwaway” status and discover there’s so much more available to them than a life of crime. It’s where they find a real sense of worth.
It started in June 2011 as a pop-up dinner with guest chef Jeffery Hobbs, who worked with young men incarcerated at the Youth Village Resources of Dallas to prepare, plate and serve a multi-course meal to about 75 diners. More than three years and three dozen pop-up dinners later, Cafe Momentum is about to fulfill its destiny as a permanent restaurant and culinary training facility at 1510 Pacific Ave. in Thanks-Giving Square.
Through paid internships — as dishwashers, line cooks and waitstaff — at-risk youths can build upon the critical skills learned in Youth Village pre-release programs in a safe, real-world environment of nurturing accountability. Youths like Leonardo Alvarez, who gave up selling drugs because of the mentorship and support of executive director Chad Houser and the opportunities presented by Cafe Momentum.
Vote now for Cafe Momentum — or any of the other worthy local nonprofits — in the CultureMap Charity Challenge.
Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty is pleased to support the outstanding work of Cafe Momentum.