Community kitchens return in Tillsonburg

Laurel Beechey, The World is a Stage

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Community kitchens are back in Tillsonburg!

Our churches are once again serving up hot meals for those having difficulty making ends meet. Unfortunately with COVID-19 even more people are unable to work and there is a great need to make sure families and individuals are getting enough to eat.

If you or anyone you know is having trouble making ends meet, please let them know that they can take out (due to COVID) a nice hot meal. Thank goodness so many churches have delicious cooks! On the other side of the table people are organizing, buying food, preparing food, cooking it, then packaging and distributing the food.

There are many people out there that truly would like to do something to help other Tillsonburgers … well this might be a good way to do it.  With COVID, regulations for food handling are probably more rigorous, so the churches may not be able to use volunteers in the food handling part, but there are also things out of the kitchen to organize the meals – purchasing, phone calls.

You don’t have to be a church-goer to help out, your caring and love are all that is needed. Give them a call and see what you can do to help or you could donate funds to help with purchases.

St. Paul’s United Church (519-688-0011) began their Community Kitchen on Oct. 17, again partnering with St. John’s Anglican Church. They will be serving every Saturday EXCEPT Dec. 26 and Jan. 2 until the end of April, as previously. The meals are available for pick up at the Fox Alley door to St. Paul’s (across from Coward Pharmacy’s back door) from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Each guest will receive a hot meal, dessert and juice box. Plastic cutlery is available if necessary. To volunteer with St. John’s schedule (at St. Paul’s Church), call 519-842-5573.

The St. Vincent de Paul Society at St. Mary’s Church is again providing take-home dinners. Their ministry will be offering hot meals with side salad and dressing, juice box, and dessert, for guests to take home from the parking lot of St. Mary’s every other Wednesday, starting Oct. 28, from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. If someone needs a meal but is unable to get to the church because of mobility issues, they will deliver. You can call the church at 519-842-3224, Ext. 5 and leave a message by end of Tuesday, the day before the dinner. Someone will return the call. Their Wednesday dates are Oct. 28, Nov.11, Nov. 25, Dec.9, Dec. 16, Dec. 23. Watch for their schedule for 2021 coming out later.

St. Mary’s will also have a table of clothes to give away, mostly new, or used, which have been donated. There will be coats, hats, jeans, shirts, and steel-toed work shoes. They hope to see them picked up rather than remain in storage!

I have heard Faith Presbyterian Church, which moved from Glendale Dr. to Bidwell (in 1st Baptist’s former building), could be providing a meal on Fridays. (Alas, at the time of writing this article I have not yet heard back with details however you can call 519-688-5111 to check.)

If anyone else in Tillsonburg is offering community kitchen meals please contact me at 519-842-9416; it would be grand if we could get two or three a week to keep people going.