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San Antonio Pay-What-You-Can Eatery Turns to Crowdfunding Site to Keep Doors Open


Comfort Café's blackberry stuffed French toast is packed with flavor. - INSTAGRAM / MR_SA_FOOD_MAN
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  • Comfort Café's blackberry stuffed French toast is packed with flavor.
Due to reduced business amid the COVID-19 pandemic, donation-based Comfort Café has turned to crowdfunding site GoFundMe to continue its mission of helping those recovering from drug dependency.

The restaurant operates in a pay-what-you-can capacity, funding addiction recovery center Serenity Star's mission of providing transformational programs for people on the road to recovery.

“Covid has severely limited our ability to fundraise through our two restaurants, which is what keeps Serenity Star accessible to those in need,” according to a GoFundMe campaign organized on behalf of the nonprofit. “During these times, our cafés have been closed, limited to curbside/takeout, and only open at a very limited capacity to do our part to keep our communities safe.”

The organization is asking for donations to continue to support its mission of providing six-month to one-year programs — both inpatient and residential — for men, women and families.

Prior to the pandemic, Serenity Star purchased a property in San Antonio, intending to develop another Serenity Star Recovery location. The site will provide personalized recovery programs, family support, one-on-one peer counseling, yoga, meditation, community living and more for those seeking sobriety.

San Antonians can support the organization by donating directly to the GoFundMe campaign, which has raised more than $15,000 since its creation in July.

Hungry philanthropists can also patronize Serenity Star’s Comfort Cafés — located in SA or Smithville, about 100 miles west of here. The restaurants offer breakfast selections such as stuffed pancakes, waffles, French toast, crepes and omelettes. Lunch options include a large variety of salads, cold sandwiches, burgers and chicken entrees.

Worth noting is that all of the café staff — from waitstaff to cooks — are in some state of their own recovery process through the SerenityStar program.

San Antonio's Comfort Café is open Thursday through Sunday, from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. The restaurant is offering takeout service, and accepts only cash and checks as payment.

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