|The Pay It Forward Cafe, at the Parmatown Mall, is an outreach of Community Ambassadors formed to meet the physical and emotional needs of families, individuals, and children who are facing challenging times. We partner with local businesses and organizations in order to provide a healthy meal every Saturday from 12pm - 2pm. In addition to providing a meal, we also provide family-fun activities for the children, as well as education and resources to all adults that attend. Our goal is not merely to feed those that come, but also to enrich their lives.|
Pay It Forward Cafe first began on December 6, 2008 at the Parma Park Reformed Church, aka “Church in the Woods” (Pastor Terry & Laura Muller). Under the direction of Kathy Weber, the program was created to assist families that had been caught in the economic downturn. Starting out as a weekly hot meal program, it evolved into becoming an essential social networking and support system for the individuals and families that attended. In addition to the nutritious meals, the Cafe also provided entertainment, educational workshops, and even fun field trips for the patrons, much of which was made possible by the remarkable collaboration of many local businesses and organizations. Weber also inspired the “Adopt-a-Platoon” program in which the children at the Cafe could “pay it forward” by sending cards and care packages to soldiers overseas.
The Cafe operated within Church in the Woods until March of 2011, at which time the church closed its doors. After March, 2011, Weber sought to find another place to transition the Cafe to. In November, 2011, she partnered with Community Ambassadors, guiding the transition and restoring the program to the Parma area community once again. Today, Pay It Forward Cafe, now housed at Parmatown Mall, continues the vision and spirit that Weber and Church in the Woods cultivated years ago.