Customers who have money to spare are more than happy to contribute to the giving wall. Thanks to this idea, one community is coming together.
Like many business owners, Beth Hilburn had a hard 2020.
She runs The Hi-Way Cafe in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Luckily, things are getting back on track at last.
But Beth could see that a lot of people were still struggling when things reopened.
She wished that she could help in some way, but she still had to make sure she had enough cash to pay her own employees.
That’s when she heard about giving walls. They work by customers deciding to donate a meal for people who are in need.
Basically, when customers are paying for their meal, if they want to, they can also pay for some extra food. Then the food order ends up on the giving wall.
Beth told KTUL:
“We have guests that come in and make a donation, and they kind of ask them to select items off the menu. And it could be anything from a dessert to a drink to kids meals all the way up to chicken fried steak if they want.”
When a hungry person needs some food, then they can either take a ticket from the wall or ask a waiter about the giving wall.
The waiter lets the person know what’s available on the wall. That ensures that the service is discreet and the hungry people don’t need to feel ashamed for being in difficult circumstances.
The giving wall itself makes it clear that anyone in need can take an order, no questions asked.
Beth was pleased to see that the giving wall was a hit. Those who hadn’t had their incomes impacted by the pandemic were more than happy to donate meals. And the people who have eaten from the giving wall have been able to get the food they need.
The customers who eat from the giving wall have really appreciated this opportunity.
In fact, Beth said that one of the happiest users was a seven-year-old boy who came in with his mother. He was delighted when he saw a cheeseburger.
The giving wall became so popular that people who had never visited the Hi-Way Cafe started donating.
People from all over the USA started calling Beth up and donating meals.
In fact, when a news team interviewed Beth, she said that she had received giving wall donations over the phone from not only her home state of Oklahoma but also Kansas, Arkansas, Texas, South Carolina, and California.
Beth has achieved something amazing with her giving wall.
Thanks to this idea and people’s generosity, so many others have been able to find not just food, but incredible food!
Perhaps the person who has learned the best lesson from the giving wall is Beth’s daughter, Maddlyn.
She said that the giving wall had given her hope for the world. After 2020, we all need some of that!
Other restaurants have set up giving walls too.
In addition to a regular “giving wall,” Zack’s Cafe has a “Veteran’s Wall” with meal slips veterans can take. Their sign says:
“Veteran’s Wall: In need or not in need, grab a meal that’s already been taken care of. This is a simple ‘Thank You’ for all the sacrifices you had to make for the land of the free!”
As we come out of the pandemic, we need to look out for one another. If you can support those who are less fortunate than you in your community, then do it. Small gestures of support, like giving to a giving wall, can make a world of difference for someone who is going through a hard time!
See the news report about the Hi-Way Cafe’s giving wall below.
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