SOAR Café and Farms, a non-profit organization based in Jackson, MI, is planning to open a brick-and-mortar cafe at 401 N. Mechanic St., formerly Anna’s Gifts & Décor building. The organization will also be moving from its previous headquarters at 300 S. Brown St. to the new location. Construction is most likely to start in January and the cafe is anticipated to open around May, 2024.
Started six years ago, SOAR Cafe and Farms focuses on providing a safe space for women who have survived human trafficking, sexual abuse, and trauma. The organization’s mission is to make “a way to heal, empower, and employ women survivors … by providing safe and supportive housing, the opportunity for personal and financial independence, and a strong community of advocates and partners,” as indicated on the organization’s website.
The new SOAR Cafe will also be a mentorship cafe that provides employment to women survivors. “We’re going to be coaching ladies through employment of the cafe, and helping them gain more freedom and get back to sustainability,” said Michelle Cochran, CEO of SOAR.
The new building, purchased by Cornerstone Properties of Mid-Michigan in October, sits on a 0.53-acre lot on the corner of Homewild and Mechanic. The interior is approximately 10,542 square feet. Cornerstone’s owner, Mary Garcia, is a board-member of SOAR. Moving into the new facility will allow SOAR to further support women survivors and provide a community, colllective way for them to heal and move forward.
Once open, SOAR Cafe will serve a farm-to-table style menu with breakfast and lunch options. The Cafe will also have closed off sections for groups and meetings, a grab-and-go section, some retail space, and some membership cubicles. By the time of this coverage, Cochran did not respond to What Now Detroit’s request for comments.