A Young Baker Gives Back

Michael Platt, 14-year-old owner of Michaels Desserts, has an inspiring business plan: for every sweet treat he sells, he gives one to the less fortunate.

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Hello, my name is Michael Platt and I’m 14 years old, and I am the owner of Michaels Desserts.

So Michaels Desserts is my baking company and it’s one-for-one, so every dessert that I sell, I give one away. I started it when I was 11 years old.

What inspired me to start Michaels Desserts is that I just really love baking and I also wanted to help people, and Michaels Desserts was kind of a mixture of both of those so it was kind of like a perfect storm.

So my parents got me a pair of TOMS shoes for Christmas when I was 10 years old. The TOMS shoes business model is one-for-one, so every shoe that someone buys, they give a pair of shoes away. So I decided to do that with my business: every dessert that’s sold by, I give a dessert away.

So some of the locations that I go to is, I will go to homeless shelters, or I’ll go just around D.C. feeding the people that are in the parks, or I’ll go to domestic violence shelters and feed the kids that are there.

So Freedom Fighter Cupcakes are basically people that inspired me to do what I’m doing and to help people and to help change the world, so I come up with those cupcake flavors, just people who inspire me, and then I’ll either base it off their nickname or where they come from or even what they look like.

My faith has played a part in my mission for Michaels Desserts in just knowing that people should eat and that even God knows that people should get three meals a day. So when I go to the park and feed the people there in the parks, they’re really, like, normally kind of quiet in the beginning, but then as I’m walking away, they’ll be, like, “Oh man, like, this is delicious,” like, “Thank you so much,” like, as I’m walking away. It makes me feel just that I help them and that I know that they are grateful and just, it’s a good feeling, yeah.

The most surprising thing that’s happened as I’m giving away cupcakes is one time when I was in a park and I was giving away cupcakes, there was a man who was really nicely dressed—he was sitting in the park—and I gave him a cupcake, and he said that was the first thing that he had eaten in three days.

So that was just something that really inspired me and also kind of taught me a lesson that hunger doesn’t look like anything. You can’t really tell if someone is hungry, so when I go to parks, I will just feed whoever is in the parks, doesn’t really matter if they’re hungry or not.

In my future, I would like to have a storefront or a place where I can actually sell my cupcakes, not just like in my kitchen and selling them online, but a place where people can actually come down and sit down and eat the cupcakes, yeah.



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