Building your career one coffee at a time

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RAPID CITY, SD (KELO) – A cafe in Rapid City hopes to change lives. Home Brew opened its doors a few months ago as a public company that represents some of the residents of the One Heart facilities, which provides transitional housing to the homeless.

Summer Wilson owned a bakery just over a year ago. But because of the COVID-19 pandemic, she lost everything.

“And so I came back to Rapid, I was staying with friends,” Summer said.

Summer then joined the OneHeart family. When Home Brew first opened, it jumped at the chance.

“I really love doing this. When I had my shop, it was just me. I used to have a store for my baby and here it’s coffee, treats, food, that’s all I love to do so I couldn’t ask for more ” Summer said.

Summer currently operates Home Brew.

Not only does the store serve coffee and goodies, but also career opportunities.

“It’s teaching everyone a new life, a new way of choice, behaviors, work ethic, the nine-yard set,” Summer said.

As with any other job, Summer was interviewed for the job.

“We treat them as we would any other potential employee. It helps develop professional skills, it makes them feel comfortable with interviewing, as some of them may not have interview skills, which kind of gives them a sense of what they will be up against. if they try to find a job elsewhere, ”Lucero said.

Nikki Lucero is the store supervisor. She says Home Brew’s goal is not only to bring work experience to OneHeart residents, but also to be a public space where residents can interact with people in the community.

“When they think of the homeless, they think of people living on the streets, people sitting on the sidewalk with nowhere to go. But there is much more to it. It’s important for people to see that at OneHeart we’re trying to make a difference and build the lives of those who are homeless right now, ”Lucero said.

All profits generated by Home Brew go to the OneHeart organization.

OneHeart’s mission is to create pathways out of poverty for those who wish to prosper, which mirrors that of coffee.

OneHeart Executive Director Charity Doyle says everyone faces poverty differently, each facing different challenges when trying to get back on their feet.

“We’re trying to help them overcome these obstacles and lay the foundation for a new future, or at least the platform from which to spring into a new future,” Doyle said.

Home Brew opened just three months ago, but Doyle has high hopes for the future.

“We work a lot with employers, we want this to be a workforce concept like no other, so we have high hopes for that,” Doyle said.

“I want to see this store work, it’s a big store with great people. Not everyone is the normal homeless you see on the streets, we have a different face, ”Summer said.

One Heart is a new facility in Rapid City designed to put homeless people back on their feet. The entire campus can accommodate up to 53 men and women and approximately 36 families.

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