Panera Cares community cafes are designed to help address the ever-worsening epidemic of food insecurity (hunger) in the U.S. Consider this: according to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), over 17 million U.S. households are considered food insecure. Simply put, for a significant number of Americans, putting food on the table is a struggle. 16 million kids – 1 in 5 – do not have enough to eat each day and lack the means to get enough nutritious food on a regular basis. Panera Cares cafes will offer a dignified dining experience in an uplifting environment – without judgment – whether or not a person can pay. Panera Cares community cafes – operated by the Panera Bread Foundation, a separate Section 501(c)(3) nonprofit entity – are meant to raise the level of awareness about food insecurity in this country, while also being a catalyst for change in our communities.