Share a Meal: The Quiltmaker Café

The month of March is National Nutrition Month®, an annual awareness campaign intended to encourage informed food choices and healthy eating habits year-round. Unfortunately, there are significant barriers to the accessibility and availability of healthy foods, even in Chatham County. Food insecurity affects communities worldwide, emphasizing a lack of access to enough food for an active, healthy lifestyle. The Quiltmaker Café in Pittsboro is working to combat the effects of food insecurity in their own backyard. Support their initiative to make nutritious meals accessible to all!

The Mission

An official 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, The Quiltmaker Café is actively fundraising to establish a pay-what-you-can, counter service restaurant to provide healthy meals to their community, regardless of ability to pay. They are an official member of the national organization, One World Everybody Eats, an organization dedicated to increasing food security for all through the pay-what-you-can restaurant model.

The Quiltmaker Café was founded by Jennie, David and Elizabeth Knowlton, each bringing their expertise and personal experiences with food insecurity to the community table. In working to create a community kitchen, the founders bring people together, regardless of income, beliefs, backgrounds and geography. In 2018, one in eight Chatham County residents were identified as food insecure, with almost half of Chatham County students receiving free or reduced lunches. When it is more affordable to opt for fast food choices, nutritious meals are no longer a choice. The Quiltmaker Café is one of 40 pay-what-you-can restaurants in North Carolina working to change that.

One World Everybody Eats Model

The mission of The Quiltmaker Café will be implemented through the seven main elements of the One World Everybody eats model:

  1. Social Enterprise: Their organization will build goals focused on community trust, not profit.
  2. Pay-What-You-Can: Without “suggested” pricing, patrons can donate how they choose in terms of money, produce or time.
  3. Guests Choose Their Portions: Patrons can specify the quantity of the menu item they choose in an effort to reduce food waste.
  4. Everyone is Welcome: Their doors are open for all to share a meal.
  5. Space for Community: A community-led approach to food security, The Quiltmaker Café offers a gathering space for others.
  6. Opportunity to Volunteer: Guests are encouraged to volunteer their time to support the mission of The Quiltmaker Café.
  7. Excellent Food: The food they provide is healthy, it is nutritious.

Support the Restaurant

The Quiltmaker Café team is working to finalize a location in Pittsboro. They plan to be open for one to two meals per day, five to six days a week. The menu will vary with the season and availability of local produce. Striving to source the majority of food from area farmers, The Quiltmaker Café will continue to support the community it serves.

You can make a difference! Donate directly to The Quiltmaker Café online or sign up to volunteer at an upcoming fundraising event!