The Catholic Charities St. Patrick’s Soup Kitchen in Pottsville, seeing a growing need for its services during the Coronavirus crisis, has found a creative way to keep serving.
In addition to serving the homeless, and those with mental health issues or other health challenges, the soup kitchen now is seeing more people who – because of layoff or other hardship – don’t have the financial means to eat properly.
“Many of our patrons are a vulnerable population,” said Terry Alexander, the kitchen’s coordinator. “They struggle when things are going well and now they will be even more vulnerable.”
Her determination to keep meeting their need is clear. “We might not have our volunteers right now, but the patrons still have me,” she said, “and I’ll make sure they get fed.”
Since the start of the pandemic, Terry has been cooking, serving and handling cleanup virtually single-handedly. She spends each afternoon cooking, then puts the food in take-out containers. The patrons start to file in at 5 p.m. and she hands out the food packages for an hour. After that, she cleans up and sanitizes everything, often finishing about 8 p.m.
The number of meals served, which in the past was about 35 to 40 per day, has grown to 60 to 70 takeout meals on some days. Meals are served Sunday through Thursday.
Alexander also helps another local non-profit organization, cooking, bagging and delivering lunches to more than 160 children every weekday.
If you are able to help Catholic Charities continue its food service to the hungry in Pottsville, consider making a financial donation by visiting the Catholic Charities website at www.catholiccharitiesad.org.