Making soup for homeless
Point Chevalier School has been paying it forward to those in need.
Each week for the past few months, teachers from the school have delivered freshly-prepared pots of soup to the Auckland City Mission.
The pupils at the school contribute ingredients, peel, chop and then prepare the soup.
Principal Stephen Lethbridge says the initiative started when a teacher decided to take leftover food from a school function to the Mission.
‘‘This particular teacher was truly surprised by the number of people there ... you don’t get a sense of this unless you see it firsthand,’’ he says.
From then the school decided it wanted to help the homeless.
Auckland City Mission relies on donations of cooked food in order to provide meals, as it doesn’t have a commercial kitchen on site.
In the year to June 2016, there were 44,079 visits to the Mission’s community drop-in centre for food, hot drinks and practical assistance.
Over the same time period, the Mission provided 220,395 hot drinks to homeless people.
‘‘We decided on soup, as it would be easy for our students to contribute small parts towards, as well as relatively easy to prepare with our limited cooking facilities,’’ Lethbridge says.
The school relies on these donations and it shows the students how a small contribution can make a difference, he says.
‘‘I really like making soup for the City Mission, because I am helping them and making a change in the world,’’ 11-year-old Sasha de Spong says.
One class also bakes bread rolls and at the end of the day, two teachers will then deliver the soup and rolls to those in need.
This term, the initiative was opened up to the rest of the school and some of the more junior classes became involved.
‘‘As part of our technology units, the students are developing items for the homeless population in Auckland,’’ Lethbridge says.
‘‘Some are making care packages, while others are making multipurpose jackets.’’
Since 1920 the Auckland City Mission has been helping Aucklanders in need by providing integrated services, including emergency food parcels, support for the homeless, movement to permanent housing, and drug and alcohol detoxification assistance.
Point Chevalier School pupils peel vegetables to feed hungry patrons of the Auckland City Mission.