A simple act of kindness by a stranger when Denise Cerreta was eight years old led this woman to pay it forward in a huge way every single day. Denise and her family were visiting a farmer’s market when she asked her father to buy some of the plump delicious looking strawberries.
Her father had to refuse because he could not afford them. As they returned to their car a stranger ran up holding a pint of strawberries saying he hoped the father didn’t mind, but he’d bought them for the little girl.
In 2003 Denise owned and was operating “Smoochy’s”, a cafe in Salt Lake City when a woman came up to the counter to pay her bill. Impulsively, Cerreta told the customer to pay whatever she could and despite the shocked look on the customer’s face Denise knew that was what she was meant to be doing with her life.
This act spurred a turnaround for the restaurant, which eventually became One World Cafe – a place where people could pay a suggested price, leave more, leave less, or volunteer to earn a meal.
Now, at age 51 Denise is founder of One World Everybody Eats Foundation a non-profit which she founded in 2006 that focuses on opening up similar ventures across the United States.
What better endorsement than this from Rush Limbaugh: (source)
These are liberals playing games with the reality known as life.
Denise and her foundation has helped open:
2008 – One World Spokane – Spokane, WA
2009 – Potager – Arlington, TX; A Better World Cafe – Highland Park, NJ
2010 – (former) Comfort Cafe – Colorado
2012 – F.A.R.M. Cafe – Boone, NC
In addition, Denise offered guidance to Panera Bread in establishing Panera Cares and Jon Bon Jovi in establishing Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation.
To date, One World Everybody Eats Foundation has directly or indirectly helped launch 30 community cafes and is mentoring over 50 cafe groups in the planning stage worldwide.
Denise made the decision in 2012 to close her original cafe in Salt Lake City in order to focus entirely on helping others replicate her model in their community. Not a bad pay-it-forward for a pint of strawberries!