Kimberley’s Baptist Church is hosting a soup kitchen every Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. for anyone to come and have homemade soup.
The soup kitchen program has been going since Jan. 19 and has yielded steady success — with a handful of regulars as well as some newbies here and there.
“Anyone is welcome to come and eat some soup, not just those who need it,” said Dave Stephanek, one of the founders of the soup kitchen program.
Stephanek said there is no one man behind the soup kitchen. Drew Westergaard, the Pastor for the church, Nick Turner and Harry Mackenzie are also the ones who helped make the soup kitchen idea a reality.
However, almost everyone at the church is involved with the program, switching out times at the kitchen and volunteering their time to provide soup for the less fortunate.
“If anyone is behind it, that’s God,” Stephanek said.
The inspiration for the soup kitchen came from an unlikely place. Pastor Westergaard said that a homeless man and traveller named David knocked on the door of the church on a couple of occasions asking for something to eat.
The pastor gave him what he needed and yet David was the type that didn’t like to stay put, and so off he would go, back to travelling between towns.
“He challenged us to think about what we were doing with regards to needs,” Pastor Westergaard said.
The church bought the cooking supplies they needed to follow proper health code and they receive donations from the community for the ingredients of the soups.
Both Stephanek and Westergaard agreed that there weren’t a lot of challenges along the way with trying to get the soup kitchen off the ground.
“City hall and the health inspectors were fabulous,” Westergaard said.
One of the volunteer cooks, Harry Mackenzie, volunteers his time and makes all his soups from scratch.
The atmosphere, with music almost always put on by volunteer worship singers, and the homemade soup, makes for a warm and welcoming event for Kimberley.
“People really enjoy the good food and the good music, It sets the tone,” Mackenzie said.
The Baptist Church invites all members of Kimberley to come down during the summer when they are going to change their approach with a hot dog barbecue on June 1.
“We are here to serve the community. We are trying to do whatever we can to say we are here to help,” Stephanek said.