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Coffee shop owners struggle, but continue to feed seniors for free amid coronavirus pandemic

The owners of Folklores Coffee House have served 10,000 meals to seniors in the last 12 weeks, but in three weeks of being open, they've made just $400.

SAN ANTONIO — The cash register is running dry, but hearts are full.

Over the last 12 weeks, Tatu and Emilie Herrera have served 10,000 meals to seniors in San Antonio.

The couple owns Folklores Coffee House on the south side. When they were forced to shut down in March, they decided to do something useful with their downtime.

Thinking of the seniors stuck at home, they started bringing free meals straight to their front door. At first, they dipped into their own pockets. Then, they started a GoFundMe.

"We're going to keep doing what we're doing," Tatu said. "If we stop, what's going to happen to them?"

With Texas starting to reopen, Tatu and Emilie are back to brewing coffee. Like many businesses, the shop is struggling. In three weeks of being open, they've brought in about $400.

"One day, it was like $14," Tatu said. "We're used to making some good money and this time, it's kind of like, geez, what are we going to do?"

Tatu said the increase of coronavirus cases in the county may have more people choosing to stay home. He hopes more customers come out to support their shop in the coming days. 

"It's not just us, it's everybody," Tatu said. "It is what it is. We've got to hang in there."

While the future of the shop is uncertain, their willingness to give hasn't changed. 

"We're the kind of people that would probably give up on our business, rather than give up on our senior citizens," Tatu said.

With so many people depending on this service, Tatu and Emilie now want to make their side project into a nonprofit.

If you're interested in supporting Folklores Coffee House, you can stop by on the weekends between 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. To making a donation to help them continue feeding seniors, click here.

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