Beyond whipping up the best caramel macchiatos and pumpkin spice lattes on this side of eternity, Starbucks is also known as a place where humanity shines at its finest. From the barista whose one-word message stopped a customer’s suicide to the deaf woman who received this special drive-thru surprise, America’s favorite coffee shop is home to some of the most beautiful acts of kindness.
And one of those heartwarming moments unfolded yet again at the Winston-Salem Starbucks in North Carolina just last month.
According to a report by TODAY, barista Shantaphae Blakes called her shift supervisor Harper Spell in tears when she realized she wasn’t going to be able to find a babysitter for her daughter, Dilynn, that day. It was 4:30 in the morning and she was ready for work, but the frantic single mother had nobody to care for her toddler.
Knowing she desperately needed to work this shift in order to pay the bills and provide for Dilynn, she was PANICKED.
“All my motherly instincts kicked in that morning,” said Blakes. “I just thought I can’t leave her and I have to make money to keep a roof over Dilynn’s head.”
Spell, her 21-year-old supervisor, could sense the angst and desperation in Blakes’ voice.
“She was so upset,” Spell told TODAY. “(Blakes) said, ‘I have Dilynn in the back seat. Would it be OK if I came?’ I just said, ‘Don’t worry about it. I need you here. We’ll take care of Dilynn.”
Beyond relieved by her boss’s flexibility, the 26-year-old hurried into work with her daughter in tow and set her baby carrier on a cafe table as they opened the store. Spell, dubbed Dilynn’s “second mom” for the shift, kept a close watch on the wide-eyed little girl who waited patiently without a fuss.
“She was just wide-eyed, watching us,” says Spell. “We gave her a few little things to play with, something to eat, and she was good.”
But even though the duo opened the coffee shop with a breeze, they knew the morning rush could pose a different challenge, as toddlers only stay content for so long.