Join Us In Growing Fork Real Community Café!

Fork Real Community Café is excited to be part of this year’s Crowdsource fundraising competition sponsored by USA Today. Last year through this fundraising event we were granted $50,000 from USA Today. With this grant we were able to move to our new location, a centrally located, higher capacity, and disability friendly building in downtown Rapid City. Read about it here.

Starting this TODAY, we will partner with Crowrdise again to raise operating dollars and compete for a grant up to $100,000.

The goals are simple:

  1. Raise awareness about Fork Real Community Café

  2. Raise a minimum of $3,000 in on-line fundraising to be considered as a candidate for one of 12 grants worth up to $100,000. Whoa!

A donation to Fork Real Community Café will help us continue to create a sense of belonging, provide healthy meals to all, and create a bond with members of our community. Fork Real Café invites you to be part of this growing organization. Will you join us?


Thanks to last year’s grant we were able to relocate the café to our new location on St. Joseph Street. This is new location has allowed the organization to grow its operations from just a few meals served to more than 3,909 meals (that’s not even counting desserts!) served since November 12th, 2018. Here’s how the concept works: the café is open for lunch service only Monday-Friday from 11-1:30. All are welcome to eat at the café regardless of means. Patron can pay by cash, credit or volunteer an hour in exchange for their meal. This unique concept allows people that cannot afford to pay for a meal to volunteer and help prepare the café for opening or they can help with closing duties. This creates a sense of dignity for people that want to serve or give back to the community. It’s a hand-up and not a hand-out. 

The café has grown a base of volunteers that come every day to love on people by serving. Those volunteers help with food prep, cleaning, busing tables and serve as door greeters. From the time a guest walks through the door to the time they leave, they need to feel welcome to a place that’s more than just about food, it’s about community. Fork Real Community Café is that place.

Fork Real café has been a place for personal growth, beyond our family of staff and volunteers. Rhonda, the executive director reached out to the Department of Corrections over a year ago and created a partnership with the minimum prison unit in town. Rhonda and her husband Dave transport 3 gentlemen that are serving time for non-violent convictions 5 days per week. These guys work alongside skilled kitchen staff and learn different skills throughout the café. One of the first guys, John, served at the café for eight months. He started out washing dishes but soon moved in to food prepping and dessert making. John was eventually paroled from prison and started applying for jobs based on his experience at Fork Real. Right away, he was hired by a local bakery as their pastry chef. Fork Real has become a positive place for job-skills training and a spring-board for future employment.

You, the community, made this growth possible with helping us reach our fundraising goal to qualify for last year’s Community Thrives grant from Gannett Foundation. Just look what you helped bring to life…a COMMUNITY Café in downtown Rapid City! Let’s grow this together.