In modern times, especially through social media platforms, issues related to social justice are more visible than ever. In our Colorado Springs community, there’s a small, locally owned business which we can all look to as an example for doing our part in being activists for change.
The Burrowing Owl is a quaint, calm, and refreshing lounge located on S. 8th Street. You’ll know it when you see the Black Lives Matter flag, the LGBTQ flag, and the homey, unique outdoor seating area with soft lights and rustic decor. Before you even walk inside, you’ll see right on the front door, they boldly display their values of respect, civil discourse, social-justice, tolerance, and non-violence. They conclude with “This place is for everyone! (If you want it).”
The owners of the Burrowing Owl were kind enough to speak with me in an interview. As an undergraduate student at UCCS, I’m taking an introductory Women’s and Ethnic Studies class, and for my Social Action Project, it’s my intention to raise awareness of this local business which takes action in our community to make it a better place for everyone.
To the Burrowing Owl owners Tyler and Cody, social justice is recognizing where oppression comes from, becoming free from that, and helping others to be free from it as well. The Burrowing Owl addresses social injustices locally by raising money for non-profit organizations and charities, ensuring their location is a safe space for all, and using their institution to raise awareness of social justice.
Any time a person enjoys a meal or beverage at the Burrowing Owl, they’re contributing to what is called the “giving tree.” It’s a compilation of multiple organizations that the Burrowing Owl donates to every month. The owners believe in pouring back into the community. They want to spread what we need more of in our society, like art, education, music, and animal welfare. Just a few of the organizations include: Inside Out Youth Services, Wikipedia, Cottonwood Center for the Arts, KRCC 91.5 FM, and Luvin Arms Animal Sanctuary.
The Burrowing Owl hopes to influence the community by improving education and arts for children and everyone, donating to social causes, and also by being an example to other restaurants and businesses in the community. Veganism is about liberation for all, including our fellow human beings. They hope to lead by example in the community by building up organizations that need support.
Whether you are inspired by the ethically responsible actions of the Owl, and begin to take action in similar ways, or you simply begin to enjoy more meals at this restaurant and support their cause, we can all look to this local business as a source of hope.
You can read more on their website here.