Officially founded in 1993, the mission of the Lighthouse Café is to transform the Glades area through God’s grace, love, and peace, by bringing together diverse groups to provide food, counseling and a helping hand to all. The focus their ministries on helping bridge denominational and racial barriers for the benefit of the entire community by bringing Christian congregations throughout the Glades together to minister to those in need.
Located in the heart of Belle Glade, Florida, their doors are open Monday through Friday from 7:00 am to noon. Each day, their dedicated volunteers prepare hot, balanced, and nutritious meals from food donated by food banks, farmers, and churches throughout South Florida. All meals served are free to anyone who comes in. Through their ministries, they also strive to give more than just food to those in need. They describe their efforts as providing sustenance for the body and soul. If someone is interested in entering a Christian drug and alcohol recovery program, they work with community partners to make it happen. Furthermore, inside of the cafe is their family-focused ministry, Ella’s Closet.
With a mission to provide the families of young children with life-saving skills such as CPR, educational workshops, mentoring and necessary provisions for their infants and children, Ella’s Closet opened its doors in 2015 as a ministry of the Light House Café. Full of clothing, baby gear, toiletries, formula, diapers, and much more, Ella’s Closet is stocked with everything you could think of for infants and children through five years of age.
Want to shop Ella’s Closet? Well, don’t forget your “Ella Bucks”! See, Ella’s Closet does not even accept good old cash. To earn Ella Bucks, you have to attend workshops or classes offered throughout the month. Held at the Light House Cafe, the mothers and families of young children within the Western Glades Communities can connect with others, while also learning life and parenting skills. Upon completion, the attendees are “paid” in Ella Bucks as a reward for attending that class or workshop. They can then choose to save their bucks for a larger ticket item, or they can go ahead and start shopping!
At R.C. Hatton, we believe in community, corporate social responsibility, & giving back. To put our beliefs into action, we are involved with ministries such as the Lighthouse Café in several ways. Whether it is through the donation of tangible goods such as produce fresh from the farm, or it is through volunteering our time, we feel blessed to be able to make a difference in our community.
We also love seeing other farms, businesses, and individuals getting involved and positively impacting our community, because we know it’s when we all come together, even greater things happen! Recently, Roth Farms & Heritage Farms donated delicious produce to the Lighthouse Café and they put together an amazing roasted cabbage, cucumber, & radish salad with a little help from two wonderful ladies, Paula Kendrick & Melanie Mason (featured below), from the Florida Department of Agriculture Food Recovery Program. Another local farm, Wedgeworth Farms, also often contributes to the Lighthouse Café. We are so grateful for the ongoing love and support within our community.