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Kitchen to feed any and all
Why work at a soup kitchen in Everett when we could have a soup kitchen in our own town?
This is the question Sharon Giberson, a member of the Langley Christian & Missionary Alliance Church, Connie Anst and Ruth Morgan were asking themselves recently. In answering it, they decided to start a soup kitchen on Whidbey Island to help their nearest neighbors rather than take a ferry to do their charitable work.
After learning that there are homeless youths and families living on Whidbey Island, Giberson said she and her partners in soup knew the south end of the island could use what Everett has had for years. So they went about the business of learning how to run a soup kitchen. Giberson she sought out the advice of the people at the Everett Gospel Union soup kitchen to figure out how to do the same thing in her home community.
With donations from C&MA parishioners and from the Star Store and Payless Foods, Giberson, Anst and Morgan opened their kitchen in the church's fellowship hall for the first time last week. Before opening the doors and pouring the first bowl of soup, all the cooks in the kitchen were required to take food handling classes.
Working with fresh produce from the Star Store and bread from Payless Foods, the kitchen had a trial run last Thursday, a trial that attracted about 30 people.
Also helping with the opening were donations from C&MA parishioners that came directly out of a special fund; those who donated were asked in church to write "soup kitchen" on their checks.
The soup kitchen is open to anyone who would enjoy a hot bowl of soup, bread and the company of others on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons. Open from noon to 1:30 p.m. at the church, the soup kitchen is not just for people in need, said Giberson. She said she wants to feed anyone who comes through the doors.
No donations or payment is sought at the lunches.
"We're not going to ask for donations here. We don't want people to feel uncomfortable," said Giberson.
Laurie Coomber, the cook behind the soup creations, will vary the menu from day to day with soups like chicken noodle, navy bean, split pea and chili, to name a few.
Giberson said the soup kitchen will provide transportation to and from the church for those who need it.