LIVERPOOL, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — It’s a cafe with a purpose and it’s expanding its reach. The Hope Cafe in Liverpool is opening a new location in downtown Syracuse this summer.

At Hope Cafe and Tea House, people come for the drinks, but stay for the purpose.

“Our mission is to meet the needs of people where they’re at and to show people hope in the midst of their despair,” said Matthew Cullipher the CEO of The People Project and Hope Cafe.

The cafe is a charity. 100 percent of its profits support The People Project, which Matthew started in 2005 to improve schools overseas, until they realized the need was so much more.

“These kids have no shoes, they have no food,” he said.

So in 2017, Matthew opened the Hope Cafe, serving not only hundreds of thousands of people in 12 other countries, but helping those in our community too.

“Providing meals and receptions for troops coming back from Iraq to doing soup kitchens,” said Matthew.

Every time you buy a meal from the cafe, you give a meal to two other people.

“You think you know poverty until you see what it’s like overseas. It’s a totally different beast,” said Matthew. “A family of 10 eating two potatoes and that’s all they have all day long.”

Since the cafe turned on its burners, they’ve fed nearly 10,000 people in places like Kenya and Peru each month.

By opening another spot in downtown Syracuse, where it’s even busier, Matthew plans to help even more.

“Maybe I can’t help everybody, but I can impact that person or these 20 people,” he said.

Whatever lives he can change, makes it worth it.

“The kids start dancing and singing, thanking everybody here and to me, there’s nothing more rewarding than that,” he said.

The cafe in Liverpool is right across from the Retreat. Since opening in 2017, it’s matched what The People Project raised in 15 years.

The location downtown will be located at 357-59 S. Warren St. where the old Vintage Lover store was at the corner of S. Warren and E. Jefferson streets. They’re aiming to have it open in September.

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