A mother in west Houston opened Belong Kitchen after discovering few job alternatives for her daughter.
HOUSTON — A brand new west Houston restaurant has been open for only a few weeks now, offering tasty to go meals.
It usually sells out by early midday. The key to Belong’s success is a recipe that can depart your stomach and your coronary heart full.
Meals made with love simply appears to style higher and the workers at Belong Kitchen love their jobs.
The workers are intellectually and developmentally disabled, like 22-year-old John Pitner. John says half-joking, “I like earning money.” That’s one thing we are able to all relate to. The workers are paid minimal wage. John provides, “I like seeing my pals and dealing collectively as effectively.”
Belong is a grab-and-go kitchen with 30 staff and 70 volunteers. The volunteers are sometimes college students and kinfolk, like John’s mother and grandmother.
“John is working 4 days every week,” mom Terri Pitner mentioned. “A lot of the younger adults have three-hour shifts.”
Kim Brown opened the nonprofit for her center daughter Ellie and others like her who, after education, have few alternatives for interplay and employment.
“She likes having a uniform,” Brown mentioned of her daughter. “She likes getting up and understanding she has a shift to work that day.”
Belong is situated within the Village Towers Plaza, a small buying middle simply east of Memorial Metropolis Mall. It’s on Gaylord, the identical road as a Spring Department ISD campus.
“I wished to be close to Memorial Excessive Faculty so we might have a by no means ending provide of volunteers and younger adults coming to work together and spend time with our staff,” Browns mentioned.
In only a few quick weeks, Belong already has many common prospects.
“It’s nice that the meals is nice trigger that makes it a straightforward resolution however it’s at all times good to assist the neighborhood,” Paul Spicker mentioned.
Mark Saffer additionally comes by weekly, choosing up a meal and baked items, saying “The cookies – my daughter can’t avoid!”
On this present day, he purchased the final three chocolate chip cookies and offers one to Ellie.
Along with deserts and muffins, Belong makes about 50 meals a day proper now and plans to develop that to 75 a day.
“The meal price is $45 and it feeds 4 to 6 individuals and menus comes out on Sundays,” worker Sam Jones defined.
The menu is posted on the web site. For now, no on-line orders. There’s additionally espresso, weekend breakfast tacos, together with sweets, to encourage of us to cease by, go to and say “hello.”
Worker Kendall Tate whips up a latte, beneath the attention of a volunteer. Kendall proudly serves the cup of joe, with a heartfelt, “Thanks for coming in.”