Joe Bussen came to Interfaith Housing and Community Services with a passion for barbecue, a commitment to family and a dream of something bigger. His business started small, doing church gatherings, youth group outings and small community events. It was a way to be out in the community, spend time with family and not only feed, but entertain people, as well.
“When I do an event, you don’t just get food you get a show. Seeing the grill and smokers going, the fire, the process — it’s all part of the experience,” said Joe. “We have fun with it.”
Joe learned about the Kansas Individual Development Account (KS IDA) Program at Interfaith Housing and Community Services from a banker friend in Hays. While going through the financial education and coaching elements, he saved consistently every month toward his goal…his own barbecue business. Once through the program he took his savings and the additional 2:1 match and invested in a food truck.
That was in 2014. With the cash infusion and a lot of hard work Joe’s Redneck Grill has taken off. He regularly employs four people and as many as ten for busy times and larger events. In addition to his truck and trailer, pictured above, he now caters out of a commercial kitchen for events throughout the year. as well.
Joe’s Redneck Grill now averages 22 weddings and five large community events a year. With his success, he has gone from being a client to being a donor.
“This program is life changing. I can’t say enough about the difference Interfaith Housing and Community Services and its donors have made in my life. I get to spend more time with my family, make a living doing something I love, and now am in a position to give back. Thank you for helping make that possible.”