The Samaritan Soup Kitchen came into being due to the increasing problem of hunger in our community. A group of church leaders met late in 1980 to discuss opening a Soup Kitchen. A mere three months later, the Samaritan Soup Kitchen opened at 1243 Patterson Avenue. On that day, twenty-six people enjoyed vegetable soup and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on English muffins.
those humble beginnings came a legacy of love and compassion.
The Soup Kitchen grew each year in service thanks to the
generosity of volunteers and donors. By the late 1990's,
it was clear that the Soup Kitchen had become outdated and
in need of renovation. Thanks to a generous grant from the
Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust, Samaritan Ministries
remodeled the Soup Kitchen in 1999. The remodeling not only
improved the look and feel of the kitchen, but also improved
the efficiency of the kitchen.
In the year 2002, an average of 222 people per day ate lunch in the Soup Kitchen, and the Soup Kitchen served a record 129,919 meals overall. Additionally, the Soup Kitchen serves dinner and breakfast to our guests in the Samaritan Inn homeless shelter. Combined, the Samaritan Soup Kitchen serves more than 300 meals per day on average. Volunteers do most of the cooking and serving chores in the Soup Kitchen, a remarkable feat given that the Kitchen never closes. As the year 2003 ends, the Samaritan Soup Kitchen is marking two million meals served since that humble start of 26 meals in 1981!
little goes a long way!
Samaritan Soup Kitchen purchases most of the food it serves
from the Second Harvest Food Bank and the US Department
of Agriculture (UDSA). While these food purchases save thousands
of dollars each year, Samaritan Ministries relies on food
donations to keep costs low as well.
shows up at the back door of the Soup Kitchen routinely.
Sometimes, a farmer or gardener drops off some extra corn
or tomatoes. Other times, a business drops off leftovers
from a banquet the night before. Still other businesses
share desserts or bread with the Soup Kitchen. Soup Kitchen
Manager Cathie Dorgan puts all these donated and purchased
items together and comes up with a wide variety of nutritious
The combination of food purchases and donations keeps food costs very low! In the year 2002, Samaritan Soup Kitchen served 129,919 meals at an average food cost of just 27 cents per meal! Even if you factor in the preparation costs (utilities, staff salaries, etc.), a warm Soup Kitchen meal costs just $1.30 to buy and prepare!
Ministries relies heavily on donated food items. There's
no need to schedule a food donation, simply stop by
Samaritan Ministries at 1243 Patterson Avenue, pull
up to the back loading dock and ring the doorbell.
You will receive a slip acknowledging your donation
for tax purposes.
Samaritan Soup Kitchen welcomes home grown food, due
to Health Department regulations, we cannot accept
home canned foods. Thank you for your generosity toward
hungry and homeless people in our community.
Soup Kitchen - Volunteer Guidelines
Soup Kitchen simply could not operate without the
love and commitment of volunteers. Each day, people
from all faiths and occupations come together to serve
food to people. Volunteering at the Soup Kitchen is
both fun and hard work. More importantly, volunteering
at the Soup Kitchen allows you to grow in your awareness
of the needs of the poor, and to offer compassion
in the face of suffering.
The Samaritan Soup Kitchen is located at 1243 Patterson Avenue, at the corner of Patterson Avenue and Northwest Boulevard. Read on for more information on volunteer opportunities at Samaritan Soup Kitchen, or call 748-1962 to join our team!
Soup Kitchen Team
The Soup Kitchen Team Leader provides leadership to
each Soup Kitchen team. The Leader encourages volunteers
to grow in their awareness and understanding of the
needs of the poor. He or she also demonstrates faith,
love and hospitality. The Team Leader reports directly
to and receives training from Soup Kitchen Manager
volunteers at 9:00 a.m. (10:00 a.m. on Sunday)
lunch preparation, serving and cleanup
menu and assign tasks to team members
responsibility for safe operation of all kitchen
and implements sanitation and safety procedures
Mission: "Providing hope and healing by
sharing, food, shelter and companionship with
the hungry and homeless through Christian love
with devotions and prayer
dining room upon completion of lunch
team members to find substitutes in the event of
for 5th day teams (Monday-Friday only)
with the recruiting of other Soup Kitchen Team Leaders
Soup Kitchen Manager of team member changes
with Soup Kitchen Manager regarding any needs or
concerns in the Soup Kitchen
a.m. - 1:30 p.m., Monday-Friday (twice per month),
a.m. - 1:30 p.m., Saturday (once per month), OR
a.m. - 2:30 p.m., Sunday (once per month)
Soup Kitchen Team Leaders must switch shifts with
other Team Leaders in the event of an absence.
Kitchen Team Member
Soup Kitchen Team Members help prepare and serve lunch
to the guests at Samaritan Soup Kitchen. Additionally,
Team Members clean the kitchen and dining room after
Volunteers must arrive on time and communicate with
the Soup Kitchen Team Leader whenever necessary. Volunteers
receive on-the-job training. Volunteers must arrange
for a substitute in their absence.
Requirements: Youth must be 13 years of age to
volunteer in the Soup Kitchen without a supervising
adult. For the safety of our guests and volunteers,
no one under the age of 13 may enter the Soup Kitchen.
These age guidelines ensure a safe and meaningful
experience for our guests and volunteers.
a.m. - 1:30 p.m., Monday - Saturday
a.m. - 2:30 p.m. Sunday
Wear comfortable clothes and shoes (bleach is sometimes
used in the kitchen)
Volunteers are welcome to eat lunch in the Soup Kitchen
during their shift
is such a joy and blessing to put on an apron and
serve our brothers and sisters that make their way
to the kitchen."
know, you meet some of the nicest and sweetest people
in the world right there in that kitchen."
am an old man, but young at heart. At 84, my desire
is to be a blessing to people and thank the Lord for
with the beautiful people who volunteer here has been
a wonderful experience."
the clients helps me to know I am part of the solution."