With the change of seasons comes a change that has been in the works for more than year in the Our Daily Bread kitchen.
After a routine fire inspection last year, it was determined the kitchen needed a new range to be up to code, but pastor Jim Reimer had no idea where the $30,000 would come from.
“Our Daily Bread provides free service food to the homeless, to the poor and to many disadvantaged through mental illness and things like that, so we don’t make any money here,” said Reimer.
It was through the actions of community members like dentist Kevin Smith, who got the ball rolling by donating an old range hood that was in his backyard, that Kootenay Christian Fellowship was able gain momentum to achieve their goal.
Then came community members like Niel Doerksen.
“We donated the labour portion of the installation as our contribution to the good works of Kootenay Christian Fellowship,” Doerksen said.
Overall about 60 hours of labour were donated to help install the range, most notably in the efforts were Ralph Goodwin-Wilson CGW Plumbing and Heating, Paul Van Caeseele General Contracting, and Ken George and Joshua George of G5 Electric. All of whom made the overall cost three times less than the estimated $30,000.
Though the kitchen has come a long way, there is still more to do.
“We still have to put in a cold air duct… we’re hoping that more funds come in, in order to pay for it so we don’t have to use our food budget,” said Reimer.
Despite needing more funding, the fellowship has enjoyed a successful summer. While there was a slight increase in their numbers, a newly enacted policy has cut down on the amount of “travellers” the kitchen saw during previous summers. Travellers accounted for an extra 100 people at the kitchen.
“We have a new policy now that everybody donates $20 for a meal card and that meal card gives them 22 meals,” said Reimer.
This decrease has allowed the kitchen to focus on the people that are really in need.
“This service is for Nelson folks,” said Reimer.
Our Daily Bread is open five days a week from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.