Local man cooks fresh food for homeless on Chicago streets

A local man is on a mission to feed Chicago by taking his kitchen on the road to wherever people are hungry.

Now, his work is getting more attention -- even from a Chicago celebrity.

When Michael Airhart opens his sidewalk restaurant every day, he doesn't need to advertise. 

“If for some reason that smell hit the air, everybody running down here,” Airhart said.

Not far from the Pacific Garden Mission, homeless people wait patiently for a rare hot meal, cooked to order.

“You going to get a fresh burger with grilled onions, right now! Yeah!” Airhart said.

He has been on a mission to feed and care for those on the streets with an initiative called, "Taste for the Homeless."

“When you working for God, you don't get tired. He give you that energy to keep going and going and going,” Airhart said.

His work is now getting attention from big names.

The Obama Foundation profiled him, Streetwise Magazine honored him and a local company donated a huge EVO Grill, which Airhart says allows him to go from feeding 500 a day to possibly thousands.

At another frequent stop, North Side Housing, you will often see Justin Cuttington helping out. It is a collaboration that started with a call from Cuttington's boss -- Chance the Rapper.

Their nonprofit – “Social Works” -- now helps Airhart's mission, which has him working morning to night, taking his food all over the city to anyone who is hungry.

“It’s like, ‘oh you want some food?’ Like yelling [out] the window and like ‘let's pull over’ and I’m glad people are really starting to take notice,” Cuttington said.

Airhart relies on his social media network to donate the food. Then, he starts cooking. His training for this is simply knowing what it means to be hungry.

“I’m not even a chef. I just grew up in Altgeld Gardens and I was a little poor, so I knew what to do,” Airhart said.

Early on, Airhart learned to stretch food and understands those who are struggling.

“He don't put us down, he lift us up,” a homeless man said.

Airhart’s goal is to not just fill stomachs, but hearts as well.