In town there is a “soup kitchen” that doesn’t serve soup. But, they do serve breakfast to the elderly Mon-Fri. There are 2 local employees & the rest is done by volunteers.
In coming to Ecuador we had two main purposes in mind:
1. cultural immersion
2. service learning
Before arriving to Cotacachi, I was anxiously searching for ways our family could serve in the community. I found a post about a thrift store that supported a soup kitchen, so I investigated. I was able to reach the thrift store owner and ask if childrens’ clothes would be useful for their shop. She responded enthusiastically. So, that was a great start. We filled one suitcase with childrens’ clothes for the “clothing closet”, that’s about the size of the store ; ).
After that she put me in contact with the Expat in charge of the soup kitchen, who just happened to live in the same complex as us. She invited me to go with her on a Thursday to see how things worked. And from there we were able to begin some actual service, it seems like a small drop in the bucket of possible needs, but it was a start nonetheless.
The morning begins by setting up chairs & putting silverware & fruit at each place setting.
The mural on the back wall depicts two individuals who attend the breakfast. The Señora on the right is 93 years old. She walks to breakfast every day, barefoot.
Once all the places are set. It’s time to administer the vitamins to everyone.
Meanwhile Grant & Max were peeling papaya for the meal. The meal usually consists of rice, eggs & bread served with fruit & a warm, filling drink. The drink is sometimes made of corn or oatmeal & other times fruit.
They also have clothes, shoes & shower facilities available for those who are in need. Medical professionals come once a month to provide needed care.