The Portimão Soup Kitchen is open to absolutely anyone. They are consistently reaching numbers of 200-280 people and it is that time of year again where there is a real need for volunteers, so anyone who can help is very much appreciated.
On the 13th of December, The Portugal News staff and others volunteered at the Portimão Soup Kitchen to prepare a warm Christmas meal that was served early that evening to 250 people. The festive meal consisted of “roasted pork and turkey served with gravy, roasted potatoes with rosemary, carrots, and fried onion and cabbage.” The preparation of the meal had its challenges as we battled with electricity shortage but we were fortunate that the Coffee Shop next door were kind enough to let us cook some of the vegetables at their premises.
Preparations started the day before with volunteers making 250 Christmas gift bags containing essentials such as milk, soap, tinned sausages, snack bars, chocolates, a towel, and socks and which were given out with the meal.
Lucy Musk from The Portugal News said that “It was a great opportunity to get involved with the community and a great example of how a little goes a long way as it allowed us to help many people that are in need.
“There are so many people in this world lacking the fundamental resources that most of us take for granted, so our time, effort, and being able to serve and help others was most rewarding. But volunteering isn’t a once-a-year thing, and the staff at The Portugal News are determined to continue volunteering weekly to ensure that people get a nutritious meal at least three times a week.”
Bella de Rose from The Portugal News had volunteered at Portimão Soup Kitchen twice prior and described her experience: “This time I came away feeling very grateful, I think people complain and perhaps don’t think that there is a greater need. You never know when you could be in that queue and in need.
“The gratitude shown was soul-filling, there were people of all different nationalities and they were so appreciative of the food given. Joy Borgan and her team of volunteers take extra care in finding out if the families have children and so they gave gifts to the children as well.
“I would like to appeal to everyone to please volunteer, it is flexible, whereby you can come just once a week and you spend 2 hours there maximum and it makes such a difference. As the weather is getting colder, they are in desperate need of blankets and clothing as well as food donations.”
Portimão Soup Kitchen’s serving times are 1pm to 1:30pm on Sundays and 6pm to 6:30pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays, with volunteers needed one hour before for food preparations. For more information and if you would like to help over the Christmas season, please contact Joy Borgan on +351 917 358 098 or email .
Following undertaking her university degree in English with American Literature in the UK, Cristina da Costa Brookes moved back to Portugal to pursue a career in Journalism, where she has worked at The Portugal News for 3 years. Cristina’s passion lies with Arts & Culture as well as sharing all important community-related news.