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Heights coffee shop A 2nd Cup has a mission: fighting human trafficking by raising awareness of the seriousness of the issue, particularly in Houston, and investing in programs that help survivors re-acclimate to the world by providing them with necessities such as housing and job training.

In 2014, before A 2nd Cup even had their own brick-and-mortar storefront, they held the first Local Fare for Local Freedom event at Monica Pope’s Sparrow. The event brought together a number of local chefs to prepare unique creations and allow the 150 or so guests to taste and vote on each, with the winning creator receiving the title of Freedom Chef.

Now with their own space that opened in 2015 on 11th Street, A 2nd Cup will be holding its second Local Fare for Local Freedom event on June 4 from 5 to 8 p.m.. The fundraising event will bring together a number of Houston’s notable chefs, and once again, ticket-holders will be allowed to taste signature hors d’oeuvres preparations from each chef and vote on their favorite. The winner will once again be crowned with the title of Freedom Chef. Among the confirmed participants this year include Evelyn Garcia of Axelrad, Justin Turner of Bernie’s Burger Bus, Max Torres of Cake & Bacon, Colin Shine of Frank’s Americana Revival, and Donald Chang of Uptown Sushi.

Beyond the tasting, the Local Fare for Local Freedom event will also have a silent auction featuring packages from each chef, a raffle, and other packages featuring local products. The proceeds from the event will go towards the development and implementation of A 2nd Cup’s culinary training program, which is intended to provide survivors of human trafficking with life and culinary skills and train them for careers in the restaurant and food industry.

Tickets for the event can be purchased at the event website; further information on the event can be found there as well, including information for those who can’t make it but want to participate with a sponsorship or silent auction donation.

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