Jon Bon Jovi has proven to be more than just a successful pop star. He has started a foundation called JBJ Soul Kitchen, which is currently about to open its third community restaurant. People who do not have the funds to eat a healthy and nutritious hot meal can come to this restaurant where they’re served without judgment. This third restaurant is opening at the Rutgers University campus in New Jersey. Bon Jovi and his wife Dorothea Hurley explained their inspiration behind JBJ Soul Kitchen and how they got involved in it.
“Hunger doesn’t look like what your mind’s eye might imagine,” Hurley told CBS Sunday Morning host, Tracy Smith. “It’s the people at your church. It’s the kids that go to school with your kids. And I think that was eye-opening for a lot of the community here that said, ‘Oh, there are no homeless people here.'”
Homelessness is a social taboo that isn’t spoken of too frequently. Because of this stigmatization, people who are homeless or poor might not seek help and won’t get access to the resources they need.
With the goal of providing the community’s people in need with quality food, the pair opened their first JBJ Soul Kitchen in 2011 in Red Bank, New Jersey. The JBJ Soul Kitchen doesn’t show any prices on the menu and the visitors have the option to pay what they can miss. Additionally, guests that can afford it have the possibility to pay for other people’s meal as well. If people can’t pay at all, they are asked to volunteer. Nearly all of the work is done by volunteers and most of the food is donated.
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Thank you to everyone who came out for our 5th Annual Chili Cook-Off! Congratulations to our winners: 1st Place: New Jersey State Police – “Bad Medicine” 2nd Place: Lanoka Harbor First Aid – “Blaze of Glory” 3rd Place: Toms River Fire Dept., Company #1 – “The Boys on the Hill” We appreciate everyone coming out to support JBJ Soul Kitchen Toms River and all of the first responders who participated. Special thanks to Home Run Party Entertainment for providing free children’s activities and Zzak G. Applaud Our Kids Foundation Inc. for performing throughout the event. We look forward to seeing everyone again next year! #jbjsoulkitchen #tomsriver #chilicookoff #tomsriverlocal
The newest project of Bon Jovi and his wife is aimed at students of Rutgers University who are having a hard time paying for nutritious food. Bon Jovi said: “We all think it’s a rite of passage to study hard and eat ramen noodles. How about if it’s the only thing you can afford?”
The couple is not planning to stop there, they want to keep opening different JBJ Soul Kitchens as long as there is a need for it. It’s obviously nothing like the performing life that Bon Jovi is used to, but there’s a different sense of fulfillment that comes along with it. “It can obviously never compare to performing or writing songs,” the rockstar said. “But what it does do is it gives you the same sense of fulfillment, I think, when I leave here at night and you see the lives you touch. I have left here, you know, after a long night of volunteering and said, ‘That makes you feel the same kind of good.’ You know? And that’s what I say, the way to feel good is to do good, you know? Find your good and do it.”