We’d be willing to wager that few — if any — clients of Denton’s Our Daily Bread soup kitchen ever expect that they will need to go there.
No one likes the sad reality that brings people to Our Daily Bread, but thankfully, a lot of people care enough that they are trying to change it.
“It’s sad that we have to provide this service, but it’s good that we can do it,” Executive Director Millie Bell told us. “It’s rewarding work.”
Thanks to a generous support network that includes about 26 churches, numerous community organizations, many caring businesses and corporations and a lot of individual donors and volunteers, Our Daily Bread serves a substantial noon meal Monday through Friday to the hungry and homeless. Founded in June 2000, Our Daily Bread marked a major milestone last week when it served its half-millionth meal.
That’s a noteworthy achievement, and the teamwork that created Our Daily Bread and keeps it up and running is a tribute to a caring community.
Our Daily Bread operates out of the kitchen and fellowship hall of St. Andrew Presbyterian Church, 300 W. Oak St., Suite 100. Meals are served from noon to 1:15 p.m. weekdays except Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.
“We have businesses and organizations that contribute every day,” Bell told us. It also takes about 25 volunteers a day to run the operation, she added. “Without the community, we couldn’t do it.”
Volunteers also fill other roles, including helping out at monthly work sessions to prepare snack packs that are distributed to the homeless for weekend use so they won’t go hungry when Our Daily Bread isn’t serving. The contents of the packs vary depending on the season, and water is also included.
Currently, Our Daily Bread is serving an average of 180 meals a day, Bell said. Demand tends to rise when it’s cold outside — like it’s been recently.
The best way to help with the mission of Our Daily Bread is to visit http://www.ourdailybreaddenton.org.
The website lists volunteer opportunities and explains how to register. Some jobs require training, and Our Daily Bread holds orientation sessions every Tuesday and Thursday to give prospective volunteers an opportunity to see what the work is like.
“We show them every aspect of the business,” Bell said.
The meals at Our Daily Bread are served without questions, but they are seasoned with hope — in addition to hot food, clients are offered other support including public assistance referrals, job search counseling and help with daily necessities.
It’s important work, and we’d like commend those who have helped make it possible for this vital agency to bring its much-needed services to the community.
Thanks to you, a lot of hungry people have been provided nutrition for today — and hope for tomorrow.