Café Paloma in Seattle’s historic Pioneer Square neighborhood is a wonderful restaurant serving Mediterranean cuisine with a Turkish flair, but it has also been so much more. “We have been a gathering place for local artists, musicians and photographers for many years,” says owner Sedat Urysal. “We called such gatherings ‘Muhabbett’ which means gathering and sharing of joy.”

Unfortunately, the joy of these gatherings has been halted by the pandemic. “We lost a great deal of business and had to shut down for many months,” says Uysal. “It has been a most difficult time, not just for us, but for everyone in the community.

Yet giving to the community is not something Café Paloma can or will stop. And that’s why Uysal’s banker knew Café Paloma would be a perfect partner for Columbia’s Pass It On Project. As a Pass It On Partner, Café Paloma is providing free meals to the community and Columbia Bank is picking up the tab. “We have been giving food to people in our community for years, and now we are passing it on in an even larger way,” says Uysal. “With Columbia Bank’s generous funding, we are going to make sure that as many people as possible do not know hunger at this time.”