THE POST-SIGNAL / Desiray Seaux
Father Mikel Polson, pastor of St. Michael Church, updated the Rotary Club of Crowley on the rebuild of Ms. Helen’s Soup Kitchen.
Ms. Helen’s rebuild moving forward
The Rotary Club of Crowley recently welcomed Father Mikel Polson as the guest speaker at their weekly luncheon.
Polson used this opportunity to update the club on the Miss Helen’s Soup Kitchen rebuild.
Polson is the pastor of St. Michael’s Catholic Church in Crowley. The church owns the soup kitchen.
Miss Helens is a soup kitchen in Crowley that has served the community out of a renovated home on West Seventh Street for many years. The kitchen serves lunch on Monday, Wednesday and Fridays, with the exceptions of the week after Christmas and the week after Easter.
They serve anyone who is in need of food regardless of the socioeconomic status of an individual.
After, many “Band-Aid” patch jobs to the original facility, Polson said it was clear that the best means of action was to demolish the old home and build a new, modern facility.
Originally, Polson expected the total cost of the rebuild to be around $300,000 but due to some very generous donors, the project has been funded. In addition to the monetary assistance, community members have also donated the demolition work, dirt work, lighting, chairs/tables, kitchen equipment and floors, therefore driving the overall cost for reconstruction down about $100,000, according to Polson.
The soup kitchen’s name comes from many years ago when Mrs. Helen John began a mission to feed anyone who came to her door. Then, in 2002 the family donated a family home to be converted into a soup kitchen, in her memory.
After the rebuild, the name will be shortened to Mrs. Helen’s.
A few months ago, Ms. Helen’s (the soup kitchen) was relocated to the former Redemptorist Catholic School cafeteria. The kitchen will continue to operate there until the new facility is built.
According to Polson, since the temporary re-location, the kitchen they are currently serving about 100-150 individuals per day. Those numbers are down by about 50 per day in comparison to the Seventh Street location.
The drop in numbers was expected because most of the diners’ means of transportation is walking or bicycles and Redemptorist is too far to travel.
Ms. Helen’s also serves as a distribution center for Second Harvest food bank.
Polson spoke of his vision for the future of Ms. Helen’s to include some fashion of a “meals on wheels” for home-bound individuals..
St. Michael’s Church is still collecting monetary donations for the general operating cost for the kitchen, which includes a minimal salary for the deacon and a part- time worker. The kitchen is also always looking for volunteers.
To volunteer stop by the old Redemptorist Catholic School Cafeteria any morning they are open.
In closing Polson commented how Ms. Helen’s is a community effort and how wonderful it is that all religions come together for God’s work, for God’s people at Ms. Helen’s