AN Ellenbrook woman has started a free soup and meal kitchen every Friday in memory of her mother to help those doing it tough in the suburb.
Lorraine Oldridge started Ellenbrook and Oldridge Soup and Meal Kitchen two weeks ago after realising there were people in need in the community. She said on the first Friday she served food to more than 250 people.
“I had a man cry because he was happy to be given a loaf of bread,” she said.
“That’s when I looked at a photo of my mother and thought about what she would do and I decided I wanted to help these people.”
Ms Oldridge makes the food at her house each week with her band of volunteer assistant cooks and with ingredients donated from the community.
She said those in need could pick up food each Friday between 5.30pm and 8pm, with delivery available for the elderly, disabled people or women in domestic violence situations.
She said the achievements of the group the night before were then posted on their Facebook page on Saturdays.
“I’ve heard some really sad stories – people who have lost their jobs and people who are struggling just to pay their bills but can’t afford food,” Ms Oldridge said.
Any food left is donated to men’s residential rehabilitation centre Shalom House.
Ms Oldridge said no one should go hungry with the resources in Australia and hoped politicians were taking notice.
She said the real heroes of the operation were the volunteers and people in the community who donated.
“I am not the hero of this project. The real heroes are the people who donate to our pantry and volunteer their time for the numerous jobs we have undertaken,” she said.