NEW PORT RICHEY — With the economy still flat, more and more people have sought a hot meal at the soup kitchen at Volunteer Way’s Moon Lake Outreach Facility.
About 150 hungry people appear six days a week at the soup kitchen at 10008 Moon Lake Road, Volunteer Way CEO Lester Cypher said.
The Premier 1000, a group of social philanthropists in Pasco County, gave $10,000 toward improvements, according to Martha O’Brien, Volunteer Way assistant CEO.
Annually, each member of Premier 1000 makes a pledge of $1,000, and then chooses a worthy cause to receive assistance, O’Brien said. This year the money will go toward a walk-in freezer to replace a second-hand unit and additional refrigeration, Cypher said.
More local restaurants are stepping up the amount of food they give the soup kitchen, Cypher said. For instance, the cooks might use donated steaks to create stew. Extra freezer space will allow the soup kitchen to store more food.
The outreach facility has a soup kitchen, free clothes closet, free haircuts, showers, and pastoral and counseling services, O’Brien noted. The Little Angel Helping Hands thrift store is next door at 10020 Moon Lake Road.
Since its inception in 2008, Premier 1000 also has provided help to Good Samaritan Health Clinic of Pasco, CARES and Fostering Hope of Florida.
To donate or learn more about Premier 1000, contact attorney Shelly May Johnson at (727) 376-7300 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Volunteer Way is a hunger-relief nonprofit organization that assists people caught in poverty. Based at 7820 Congress St., the food bank distributes food to an average of 20,000 homeless and low-income families per month and to food pantries in Pasco, Hernando, Pinellas and Hillsborough counties.
For information, contact Martha O’Brien at (727) 815-0433 or Martha@thevolunteerway.org.