September 18, 2009
The aroma of fresh bread and hearty homemade soup wafts through the dining area in Mackey Hall - the new home of The College of Wooster's Soup & Bread program - every Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. But the most satisfying part of this midday meal is not the food, but rather the knowledge that by eating simply others will have an opportunity to simply eat.
A popular dining option at Wooster for more than 30 years, Soup & Bread enables students to donate a portion of their meal money to benefit local, national, and international hunger organizations.
Until last spring, the program operated out of Kittredge Dining Hall, but when that facility was closed due budgetary reductions, a group of students huddled with Chuck Wagers, director of hospitality services, to find a new home for Soup & Bread. Arrangements were made to move to Westminster Church House's Mackey Hall on the southern tip of campus. Unfortunately, that alone would not be enough to save the program. Students and other volunteers would also have to
step up and run the operation, or watch it fall by the wayside.
The students responded enthusiastically and even developed a way to infuse new life into the program by inviting faculty and staff to serve as volunteers. Meanwhile, the amount set aside from each meal card swipe was doubled (from $1.50 to $3) to compensate for the reduction from two days a week to one. At the end of the year, that fund will be designated for a particular organization. In the first two weeks alone, 300 students participated.
"Soup & Bread provides valuable volunteer opportunities," said Wagers. "It also gives us a chance to make a difference in the lives of those who have much less than we do."
1189 Beall Avenue, Wooster, Ohio 44691. (330) 263-2000
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