We're not great local citizens. We want to be better about that. We can tell you about the root causes of poverty in Zambia, but we can't give you the scoop on, say, the recent spike in violence in our Seattle hood. To be clear, I don't think there's been an increase in violence, but – if there was – we'd probably be clueless. Not cool.
One of our goals, in honor of 5 years of our NVR lifestyle, is to be more mindful of what it means to be a good local citizen. So, we want to escalate our involvement and talk about it more here. Besides, Seattle's a fantastic home-base; it's about time that we gave it more blog love (even though we're not often here).
At least we're off to a strong start in chipping away at that goal. A couple of weeks ago, we wrote all about our inspiring visit to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Visitor Center. At the end of that post, we promised to return to the center in order to hand deliver readers/friends "make the world a better place" pledges.
We wrote up a bunch of cards (thank you to all contibutors) and made our way back to the foundation. After jotting down a couple last minute pledges, we got them all up on the Share Your Cause tree. We're confident that every card we added will serve as inspiration to other visitors.
All that card hanging took a lot of energy, so it was time for lunch. Okay... we're food obsessed, so it was time for lunch. In the spirit of continuing the "better citizen" theme of the day, we knew exactly where we wanted to go... FareStart.
FareStart describes their business as "a culinary job training and placement program for homeless and disadvantaged individuals." They are currently celebrating 20 years of making Seattle a better place. Here's their mission:
FareStart provides a community that transforms lives by empowering homeless and disadvantaged men, women, and families to achieve self-sufficiency through life skills, job training and employment in the food service industry.
FareStart's comfortable yet design savvy restaurant, at 7th and Virginia in downtown Seattle, serves a delicious variety of lunch items every weekday. We especially love the vegetable polenta, but they also serve common lunchtime favorites. Check out that burger.
All proceeds go right back into funding FareStart programs, and – better yet – the restaurant itself serves as a perfect training ground for the program's students. FareStart's premiere event is their weekly Guest Chef Night. Most Thursday evenings, Seattle's top chefs work with the program's students to serve a sensational dinner. It's Seattle's best meal deal, for sure.
There you have it – the makings of a pretty perfect give back-y day in Seattle: Gates Foundation to blow your mind, and then FareStart to talk about it over tasty food.
Do it! Better yet, let us know when you're in town, and we'll tag along. That is if we aren't busy getting cats out of trees and helping elderly people cross busy streets.
We're heading to the Guiding Lights Conference this weekend. It's all about "living like a citizen." We need all the help we can get, so we'll take it all in and pass along the good stuff to you.