We had the good fortune of connecting with Tracey Porter and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Tracey, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
We never intended to start Food Trucks Against Homelessness, it just organically unfolded. Our original intention was to feed our houseless neighbors through the holidays during the pandemic and to provide business to our local food trucks then this morphed into a weekly endeavor. We partner with Westside CARES to serve our houseless neighbors on Mondays. I have always been a “make it happen” type of person so that is what I did and am still doing. I am definitely learning some things along the way but I feel that Food Trucks against homelessness is necessary. WE (meaning FTAH and our community) need to help each other, that is what I believe as humans we were put on this earth for, to help each other.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Food Trucks Against Homelessness brings food trucks to Westside CARES to fill the bellies of our houseless neighbors. If a food truck is not available then we will serve burritos from La Casita. We also provide needed items such as new underwear, socks, hats, gloves and hand warmers.
We are so grateful that we have the opportunity to help our underserved. Our hope is that we can hold space for our most vulnerable neighbors in our community and provide them with a warm meal and items to help them during their time on the streets.
My wife and I both have full time jobs on top of Food Trucks Against Homelessness. All of this can take up a lot of time but after almost 2 years of helping our houseless neighbors and seeing the appreciation they have, the encouragement they have from us just showing up and helping them out, how can we not continue this mission? It makes a difference in their lives and we get the opportunity to see them succeed in finding housing and getting on a path to an independent life.
We have been put on this earth to help each other. That is what Food Trucks Against Homelessness is about.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Colorado Spring is an amazing city with some amazing things to do and see. I have been here since 1993 and seen some major growth.Of course, I would take my besties to the mountains and to hit the stair stepper from hell aka the Incline. Some of my favorite joints to eat at would be Skirted Heifer for the best burger in town, Shuga’s which has amazing food, drinks and decor, and hunting down our local food trucks. We definitely have more choices in restaurants than when I first moved here. Coming from the Detroit area and having diverse food choices, I am so grateful that Colorado Springs is finally catching up. I certainly would find a local Silent Disco to top the night off, I live for Silent Discos.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I suppose we ought to give thanks to the pandemic because without that Food Trucks Against Homelessness may have never happened. I am a lover of live music and people and without that during the pandemic, FTAH connected me to people. Our local houseless neighbors are some of the most resilient people and that in itself gives me so much encouragement. The local support that our community gives to FTAH is what keeps me going, without them FTAH would not exist. It is persons like my family, Kristy Millligan from Westside CARES, Jessie Pocock from Inside Out Youth Services and Shawna Kemppainen from the Place who lead by example and always answer their phones should I need any support or advice. This list could go on, if you have had a part in my life journey then you get a shout out as everyone has added some type of support, mentorship, love and encouragement.