Waikiki girl Claudia Shirra (9) collects chocolates for SOUL Soup Patrol

Waikiki girl Claudia Shirra (9) collects chocolates for SOUL Soup Patrol

EVERYONE needs some sweetness and nine-year-old Claudia Shirra believes it should be through chocolate.

Claudia has been collecting chocolate bars to give to the SOUL Soup Patrol, which feeds Rockingham’s homeless and needy.

Claudia said she got the idea after going to a local cafe with her mum.

“I was at the café and SOUL Soap Patrol had a basket there for people to put food in,” she said.

“When I looked in it I realised there wasn’t any chocolate.

“I thought to myself ‘everybody deserves a little chocolate in their lives’.”

So far Claudia has collected a box thanks to donations from family and friends.

“I was so surprised; I only thought I would get a couple of bars,” she said.

Her mum Jane said she was proud but not surprised at her daughter’s initiative.

“She loves everyone; on the box she has been keeping a tally of what she has so far,” Ms Shirra said.

“She has written messages on it to inspire people, such as ‘think about people who don’t get chocolate’ and ‘make someone happy’.

“It’s been her idea; she has totally done this herself.”

Claudia’s grandmother Cheryl Jordan has donated to the cause, along with members of the Cockburn Seniors Centre and Claudia’s classmates. She spoke to Woolworths, which donated a $20 voucher to Claudia to buy some chocolate.

“For a little girl to take this on by herself – she’s a kind-hearted little soul,” Ms Jordan said.

SOUL Soup Patrol was started by sisters Eileen Giles and Patty Powell in September 2008.

It is run by volunteers and relies on the support of the local community.

Ms Giles said children were quick to recognise the importance of kindness for another.

“For us it’s lovely to see the children do this – they have the most beautiful hearts,” she said.

“They recognise the need to help others. One little boy gave his first pay cheque from his paper round to help the homeless.

“We mainly do home cooking – good hearty meals that people will remember.

“So many people are struggling, not just the homeless; they all need a helping hand.”

They serve about 150 people per week on Thursdays and Sundays.

For details on donating or volunteering, like them on Facebook at SOUL Soup Patrol.