There’s soup for you at the Waterford United Church.
Joyce Stover and Lynn Snively work together to hold monthly community dinners at the church to give people a place to come together.
The duo each makes a large pot of soup, changing the flavour each month. Jan. 8, they joked that they never make the same soup twice because they don’t follow recipes.
January’s soups were mushroom and bean.
The community dinners have been going on since 2016. Stover’s goal was originally to serve around 60 people. The first year attendance averaged around 20 people each month, but as it has grown they now have between 40 and 50 people show up for the dinners.
“It’s as much for the social interaction as it is for the soup,” said Stover. “People eat alone too much of the time. Here they sit with friends, and make new friends.”
“We have a few people that we send extra soup home with because they need it,” said Snively.
The pair added that the free meal is for anyone interested in attending. The monthly event is about community building, which is done through all different members of the community participating.
“Everybody is including and it’s just a meal that we have together,” said Stover.
Stover also decorates the space with nice tablecloths to create a cozier atmosphere for the dinners.
The dinner is held at 5 p.m. on the first Wednesday of each month. It is pushed to the second Wednesday if the first falls on a holiday.
This month’s event fed 45 people.
They do not ask for any financial support from those attending. This makes it more welcoming for everyone. They are always willing to accept volunteers to help with set up, take down, and serving the meal.
Students from Waterford District High School also use these community dinner evenings to offer items from their clothing drives. Everyone can sort through the clothing and take items that would fit them or anyone they know that might need some extra items.