St Augustine's, Dumbarton

Scottish Episcopal Church

Charity Number: SC002984

Food for Thought August 2017

Community Soup

As you may be aware, our new initiative, Community Soup, started in May. This is being funded through the Fair Food Transformation Fund and we will be able to draw down up to 20K from the Government to fund this project and contribute towards wages.

Before we began we hoped to feed between 6 – 10 people per session with 2 sessions per week. In reality we are now providing lunch for between 30 – 40 people every Wednesday and again on a Thursday!

In the 12 weeks since we started we have the setting up and organisation down to a fine art thanks to the many volunteers who have chosen specific tasks and who continue to support us.
For some the task they have chosen is to sit down with people and chat and the feedback we get from this has been a complete surprise to me. I did not realise the amount of loneliness in our community. As someone who comes from a large family and who is very seldom alone, at home or in work I cannot comprehend how I would feel if I had not spoken to someone for a whole week.
On many occasions I have wished for a little isolation but on reflection have realised that this may not be the idyll I envisage and is a reality for many who long for a bit of company.

When we conceived Community Soup, I thought that we would be providing a free lunch to those who could not afford a cooked meal every day and this fell in with our ecumenical partners at St Patrick’s Church, who provide a free meal on a Monday, Riverside who provide a subsidised lunch on Tuesdays and Friends of St Augustine’s who do likewise on Friday’s. Our initiative would we thought fill the gap in the week and allow people on low income to have a cooked meal every weekday for £5 and of course this is true but I did not foresee that so many would come for the community as well as the soup. A bi product of this is that those who come for companionship give a donation to the project for the food they receive and this is a much needed boost to our overall costs.

In a very short time I have come to understand the true meaning of our catch phrase name.

Thanks be to God!


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