Caring Through Cupcakes

May 05, 2017 11:17 PM

(ABC 6 News) -- A mother-daughter duo extended their bakery business to downtown Rochester, Minnesota in February.

However, within their first week, the owners are turning their sweet treats and into an act of kindness.


"We like to see people smile," co-owner Jessica Hoekstra said. 

Hoekstra and her mom, Jean Kroning, have owned Jem's Confections for 6 years. In February, they finally opened up a small shop in downtown Rochester.

"This is just a dream come true," Hoekstra said. 

However, one day Hoekstra and Kroning wanted to take these sweet treats and turn them into an act of kindness.

"As we were walking to our cars, we went past the hospital, and we looked in the window, and we see all those people sitting there," Hoekstra said. "And it just hit us that we may be really happy, but they could be having the worst day of their life."

Hoekstra then came up with the idea that she and her mom would donate the leftover bakery on Fridays to the staff and patients at Mayo Clinic.

"We clean out everything and donate it to either patients waiting area, or a nurses station or general service," Kroning said.

These deliveries have become so popular around Mayo Clinic that they let patients and other staff nominate deserving people and then draw names out of a bowl each week.

"It's just fun to see how excited they were when they brought them here,” Mayo Clinic, Methodist Hospital nurse Julie Oss said. “I've been a nurse on this floor for 7 years and it was well-deserved for our staff, it was very nice. We're very appreciative."

So every Friday evening you may catch a glimpse of this mother-daughter duo making the community a little bit sweeter.

"It makes you feel really good," Hoekstra said.  

Anyone can make a nomination for any of the hospitals in the Rochester area. Jem’s Confections store downtown has cards available to fill out during business hours. 


Elise Romas

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