The Cuenca Soup Kitchen
The Cuenca Soup Kitchen, who in 2017 began feeding a group of only twenty-five people, two days a week at their first kitchen located inside the Hospital Vincente Moscoso. Today in 2020, the kitchen currently serves close to a thousand hot lunches per week to mostly the influx of needy Venezuelan refugees, but also to the Ecuadorian working poor, where they are currently located inside the Iglesia San Francisco, as part of the Posada San Francisco.
One great example of this type of initiative meeting the streets is the Food Outreach Program representing the outreach portion of feeding the, which was setup in cooperation with the Cuenca Soup Kitchen and Snow Angels in Ecuador, who together devised a program to go out into the streets Cuenca, to find this families that needed our help, but who may not have the ability or resources to come to the Cuenca Soup Kitchen location at the Posada San Francisco.
Food Outreach Program
From the first year and a half years since its inception, the Food Outreach Program has grown from the offering sporadic lunches (when it had the volunteers and the funds), to providing 70 lunches per day – Monday through Friday. Most of the lunches go towards the working, yet poor vendors in the center of Cuenca, many of whom can be recognized by their wheel barrels and baskets full of fruit and vegetables, baked goods and other wares for sale. Other lunches are reserves and delivered to those who are too young or are too disabled to be a part of the daily hustle and bustle that makes of the city of Cuenca in the cold mornings and hot afternoons.
The cost to run the Food Outreach Program is currently running around $1,000 PSD per month, all which goes towards the purchasing of food and related items (bags, cutlery, condiments, hand sanitizers, etc.), with Snow Angels in Ecuador providing the majority of the funding for this program in cooperation with the Cuenca Soup Kitchen .
Joel admits, “It has been rewarding yet quite often very frustrating.” The need is so great that the program could easily serve twice as many people. That breaks my heart and the hearts of the eight volunteers I have working with me,” says Joel.