URBANA, Ill. (WCIA)– A cafe at the University of Illinois is helping students and staff afford a meal if they don’t have the money to pay. Bevier Cafe launched a pay what you can model. Customers are given a suggested price for their meal. They can pay that amount or pay more or less than the suggested price. People can also pay it forward. That will help someone else eat in the future. Bevier Cafe normally serves anywhere from 100 to 150 people per day. They saw those numbers drop to 10 to 15 people. Once staff found out some students on campus may be struggling to pay for food, they decided to help.
“Being a college student is hard. Being a college student and hungry is next to impossible, so it seemed like a really good opportunity for us to step in and help,” said Jorden Brotherton with the University of Illinois. They say the response has been overwhelmingly positive. They hope to continue this model through the end of the semester, but there’s a possibility it could last longer.