• Gianna

#10 "People want to be valued!"

Updated: Jul 24, 2019

My last facetime call was SO awesome! It was with Maggie Kane, the founder of a pay-what-you-can cafe in Raleigh, North Carolina. Her cafe is called “A Place at the Table”, and everyone who walks in gets a seat!

Almost 99% of the human body is made up of six basic elements. There is a God who took those six basic elements, put them together, and created a human race. A human race filled with a multitude of different thoughts, dreams, and walks of life.

Maggie Kane is a part of that human race. Almost 99% of her body is made up of six basic elements. As a sixteen-year-old in Raleigh, Maggie loved volunteering at a local soup kitchen, and she continued to serve when she attended NC State University. While in college, she started to develop friendships with the men and women who came to the shelter. Each new friend had different life experiences, but that did not matter. Just like friends do, they would share conversations over meals. Sometimes it would be at a local cafe, and sometimes it would be at the same food kitchen where Maggie volunteered. It was eye opening for her to be getting served a meal at the shelter instead of serving it.

When Maggie mentioned this to me during our chat, she paused for a second. She looked me in the eyes and said, “Gianna I have been sitting in this coffee shop since 9:00 this morning. I have a menu full of choices, I have a comfortable place to sit, and no one has asked me to leave.” Maggie paused again and then said, “When I went through the line at the shelter, I was handed a plate without options, I had to stand outside, and I felt rushed to eat.” Maggie needed me realize how important the restaurant experience is, and how we take it for granted. When eating at a restaurant, we are valued and not just treated as the next one in line.

Maggie opened up the first pay-what-you-can cafe in downtown Raleigh called “A Place at the Table.” They offer a welcoming and inviting space providing an opportunity for all people to come and experience conversation and community. Maggie understood that people need to be accepted and loved, and a cafe is a perfect place to serve those needs. People want to be greeted when they walk in and asked how they are doing as they enjoy the food they have chosen. People want to be valued.

So what can we learn from Maggie? We can begin to understand that 99% of our body is made up of six basic elements. We are not as different as we claim to be. For example, the only difference between someone with a house and someone without a house is the house. The only difference between someone with a degree and someone without a degree is the degree. We need to stop placing labels on others and start placing love on each other. Almost 99% of the human body is made up of six basic elements. There is a God who took those six basic elements, put them together, and created a human race.

Maggie opened up “A Place at the Table” because she broke down the borders between herself and the people on the street. We can do that too, and it starts with you. Maybe it’s your neighbor, your co-worker, or your bus driver that you always believed was different from you. Make a decision to leave that thought behind and make a new friend. What border are you going to break down today?

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