Community comes together in support of kitchen


The pantry shelves of the Loaves and Fishes community kitchen at the New Beginnings Fellowship are packed full thanks to the Community Development class at Confederation College, with support from local schools and businesses.
“I don’t think the shelves have ever been this full,” voiced kitchen co-ordinator Joy Lockman, chuckling that if they had done any better they wouldn’t know where they would put the food.
As an assignment, the class was asked to work together to develop a community initiative.
They all agreed supporting the community kitchen was a worthwhile cause.
The Community Kitchen—also known as the soup kitchen—runs Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, with lunch served from noon-12:20 p.m.
“One of the main reasons is their funding has been completely cut,” noted student Harvey Jolicoeur, referring to why they chose the community kitchen to support.
“They need all the help they can get.”
The class enlisted the help of local schools and businesses to help support the growing need at the community kitchen.
At J.W. Walker and Robert Moore Schools, for instance, there was a food drive while loose change jars were set up at many businesses.
Fort Frances High School also held both a food drive and a change drive.
“We did very well, especially for just a one-day food drive,” stressed Confederation College student Mary Wood. “The box of my truck was so full, we couldn’t close the lid.
“We’re very thankful for all the support we had for this very worthy cause,” she added.
The classes with the largest donations at each school were Kathy Smeeth’s Grade 4/5 class at J.W. Walker and Christa Gibson’s Grade 4 class at Robert Moore.
They will receive gift certificates that were donated by local businesses for their outstanding efforts.
Lockman said currently they’re preparing food for 30 people each day, but they are looking at increasing the quantity as more and more are stopping in for a meal.
“One thing we try to do is have nutritious hot foods,” she said, citing the community kitchen offers more than just soup.
And the college students didn’t just drop off the donated goods, they sorted the items and even stayed to help stock the shelves.
“Any little bit we can do to help . . . is better than nothing at all,” Wood expressed.
For her part, Lockman is thrilled by all the support—from the college students and the community.
“We’re very grateful and feeling really blessed by the community and the support we’ve got,” she enthused.