Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - Christmas -

SINCE 1996 one re­tired couple has been work­ing hard to make sure the hun­gry and home­less in the com­mu­nity don’t go with­out a hot meal.

And as the Christ­mas sea­son ap­proaches, their sense of char­ity only be­comes stronger.

Bev­er­ley and John Lowe have been mar­ried for more than 40 years, and for half that time they have been build­ing Manna, their non-for-profit or­gan­i­sa­tion in Vic­to­ria Park.

Manna has grown from just one pot of home­made soup to what it is to­day – an or­gan­i­sa­tion with over 200 vol­un­teers and four staff, feed­ing up to 300 home­less peo­ple a day.

It also pro­vides over 100,000 school chil­dren with break­fast a year, gives Christ­mas food ham­pers to the less for­tu­nate and more. How did it start? “We passed a park one night and I no­ticed peo­ple sit­ting there, and af­ter five hours they were still there so I said to John ‘let’s go home and make soup’,” Mrs Lowe said.

“Then more and more peo­ple start­ing com­ing, and in the process we found out school chil­dren were also hun­gry so we started feed­ing them too.”

Ev­ery day Manna pro­vides the hun­gry with a three-course meal of home­made soup, a main meal, a dessert and of­ten a treat.

Mr and Mrs Lowe and their hard­work­ing team of employees and vol­un­teers will be work­ing hard to en­sure the home­less and less for­tu­nate have the Christ­mas they de­serve.

“To us, Christ­mas means giv­ing,” Mrs Lowe said.

“We gen­er­ally feed 250 a day, but we’ll be feed­ing up to 350 over the Christ­mas pe­riod a day.”

On top of the daily meals, Manna will make up to 500 Christ­mas ham­pers for strug­gling fam­i­lies and up to 350 ham­pers for the home­less.

For in­for­ma­tion on how to do­nate visit www.manna.org.au.

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