It was one weekday afternoon when Laura Rose was standing, as she often does, in the dining area of the building, talking to clients as they sat eating yogurt and drinking coffee.
This was a few hours after a higher traffic lunch rush of around 30 people.
The kitchen has been operating out of its new building since the grand opening in the spring.
“We’re into the afternoon coffee gang,” she says with a smile.
Back in volunteer Soup Kitchen president’s office, it’s organized chaos.
All things, from binders and books and microwaves, to papers and files, all have their place.
Even her six foot tall spice rack is systematically arranged. It’s just that it’s a tad cramped.
She passes through almost two feet of space in between her desk and another shelving unit.
It’s a large piece of furniture, made for a corner office. It was given to her, and it’s just a touch too large for the space.
She’s thankful for the donation and she works with what she has. But lately, this is proving to be more difficult.
She pulls a file out from one of the folders on her desk to show the drop in funds the Soup Kitchen Board is experiencing.
A few of their major supporters haven’t provided a donation this year, equating a lack of approximately $6,000 that the registered charity is used to receiving.
She said before they started truly skimping, the kitchen cost around $3,000 per month to run.
The new building, which is three times the size of the old soup kitchen and open five days a week also has higher cost.
Because of this, the lack of regular and steady donations is causing them stress.
So right now Rose is skimping.
She takes me into the kitchen’s large pantry where her food supplies are stacked, and she details all the innovative ways to make something out of nothing, or at least very little, adding just the right kinds of spice.
She points out the staples that are steadily dwindling.
They are working to fundraise, holding barbecues and soliciting companies for donation with a ‘list of needs.’
But so far they are barely breaking even, or having no luck.