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Changing Lives One Cup of Warm Soup at a Time

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LifeStitches Program in Uganda

Approximately 795 million people globally do not have enough food at their disposal to lead a very basic healthy life according to the World Health Organisation (WHO). Sub-Saharan Africa, which includes countries like Burundi, Nigeria, and Ugunda, is the region with the highest percentage of hunger with one in every four people being severely undernourished. While there are many international efforts being made to relieve global hunger, small-scale efforts, such as the initiation of soup kitchens, can make an immense, immediate difference in the lives of those affected by poverty.

Why soup?

There are a multitude of reasons why soup is the ideal food to serve to a large group of hungry people. Soup is not only delicious as well as extremely nutritious, but it can also be prepared in countless ways according to what ingredients you have at your disposal, making it extremely cost-effective. Due to its high water content, soup also boasts superb hydrating properties which can help nourish the cells of the body significantly. A little bit of soup goes a long way, leaving you to feel satisfied faster than many more solid meals would. The greatest benefit of soup is, however, the fact that it can easily be digested by young and old alike, making it the perfect universal meal to provide to diverse communities in need.

How can I get involved in a local soup kitchen?

There are numerous ways in which someone can get involved in a soup kitchen initiative. A good place to start would be to seek out a local soup kitchen and offer them your assistance. You can also choose to offer financial assistance to an initiative situated in a far-off poverty-stricken part of the world where intervention is desperately needed. If you can actively get involved in either food prep or serving at the soup kitchen, do so. Alternatively, offer to assist by donating cash, soup ingredients, and other assets and consumables they may need. There is no such thing as too small an effort and any help will be greatly appreciated by the organizers and the beneficiaries alike.

Volunteer when help is needed the most

Charities such as soup kitchens are typically inundated with offers of assistance during holiday periods such as Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. If you really want to make a difference, volunteer to help during a quieter period when there is generally not enough help to go around. Also, make a point of leaving your pity at the door as an attitude of privilege will make you seem arrogant and disinterested. Instead of showing pity, practice compassion, treating the beneficiaries as friends rather than charity cases.

Volunteering your time or money to contribute towards a soup kitchen is a very noble act of kindness. Soup has been warming stomachs and healing broken hearts for millions of years and will undoubtedly continue to do so for many more to come.

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