Day 8: Lunch Meeting

After a busy first week, we started week 2 with a visit to a local business called Everyday Cafe in Homewood. This neighborhood, is one square mile of size however, Dr. Wallace showed passion and dedication into social improving and making business bloom in Homewood. It was very interesting how many “not for profit” businesses thrive in and affect the community that is still developing.

Dr. Wallace stated that his business is “not for profit”, but he has to make profit in order to stay in the market. His main goal is social and community development/engagement. He emphasized his role in improving education especially exposing elementary kids to STEAM, replacing “Art” with “Agriculture” in the acronym. He introduced STEAM focused after school and summer programs because he realized that education is key to long success and that our future is going to be STEAM focused. These kids aren’t normally exposed to science, he stated that they only get 9 weeks of science throughout the year. Because of this, he gives them hands-on experiences and ultimately gives them the chance to see the power of education.

Another problem that he saw in his childhood hometown, was the lack of social hangout places. That is the reason why he built Everyday Café in November of 2016 where people can go “meet, greet, eat.” He created a space for people to relax, to work, to hang out, or meet new friends. Also, this café generated employment for youth and other young adult residents of Homewood. The restaurant’s supply chain is as stated, “super local” which cuts down the transportation costs and deficits that other restaurants encounter.

Dr. Wallace’s home did not change, however, he is successful in developing “not-for-profit” social enterprise in his neighborhood, influencing the well-being, social, and economic aspects of the town. He influenced me to think that having a social purpose is and isn’t challenging in any and all complex environments if you’re passionate in community/social/economic development as well as engagement. IMG_5765.jpg