The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio


October 23, 2008

Soup kitchen hours: Sporadic

Manpower shortages, rising food costs challenge Salvation Army soup kitchen’s operation

Even the soup kitchen is hurting.

Since the end of September, the soup kitchen at the Ashtabula Service Center of the Salvation Army has operated sporadically due to a manpower shortage.

Alice Hardin, service center coordinator, says the days of service are determined one at a time.

“When I come in at 8 o’clock, I decide then if we are going to have enough staff to cook a meal that day,” Hardin says.

There’s really no way for Hardin to notify clients that the kitchen won’t be operating on a given day, aside from hanging a sign on the front door. That usually means a wasted trip for clients for whom transportation is a problem.

She says many of the kitchen’s clients don’t have a telephone, so they can’t call ahead or access a recording. Indeed, Hardin says some of the soup kitchen clients live on the street or in the gulf.

The schedule fell apart this month after Hardin had to take time off for a medical issue. As the only staff member at the service center, Hardin had no choice but to close the kitchen during her absence. That led to rumors that the center had completely closed, which is not true, says the Rev. Michael Legg, who chairs the advisory committee.

“There are no plans to close it,” Legg says. “We actually want to expand services.”

Since Hardin returned to work, the soup kitchen has operated as staffing allowed. Overwhelmed by all the other requests handled by the service center, Hardin has lacked the time and energy to also run the soup kitchen. She says committed, concerned volunteers or a second staff member are needed.

The meals help residents stretch entitlements and low wages. The service center provides meals to walk-ins at the Lake Avenue location and also prepares food for three satellite sites, including Ashtabula Towers.

Text Only
  • Historic Kirtland Nativity Exhibit Nativity exhibit to open in Kirtland

    Volunteers are still busy putting up more than 600 Nativity scenes for the nationally acclaimed exhibit at Historic Kirtland in preparation for the formal opening on Friday. A lighting celebration and musical program will begin 6 p.m. Friday. Nativity sets representing countries and cultures from around the world will fill the Visitors Center and the one-room schoolhouse located next to the center. The theme of the 11th annual exhibit is “Unto Us A Son Is Given.” Admission is free and open to the public. Historic Kirtland is located at 7800 Kirtland-Chardon Road, just off Route 306 south of I-90.

    November 27, 2013 2 Photos

  • newspaper bicent.jpg Odd Tales of Ashtabula County

    Twins were pretty rare in Williamsfield Township, so when Correne Cutlip delivered twin girls on April 22, 1939, her husband, Bob, started calling neighbors and relatives with the good news and a plea for help: they would need twice as much of everything.

    December 9, 2012 1 Photo

  • axis salley and sister.jpg Guilty of treason!

    She was a lonely child, precocious, some said; others said she was simply aloof. Two things for certain, she was beautiful — neighbors often remarked on her black curls — and odd, especially by  the standards that existed in Conneaut in 1916.

    November 25, 2012 2 Photos

  • OHAST108.jpg Those 10 Calaway girls

     In an era when many couples are happy to dote on just one offspring and most U.S. McMansions have at least 2.5 bathrooms, the story of the Calaway sisters is amazing.

    August 5, 2012 3 Photos

  • Hewitt.jpg The music got him 'All stirred up inside

    Floyd Hewitt loved to listen to the radio, especially that cool jazzy music that got him “all stirred up inside.”


    July 30, 2012 1 Photo

  • Burton's house.jpg The romantic bachelor

    The brass plate is partially obscured by the July grass that grows about the stone substrate.

    July 15, 2012 1 Photo

  • Smith Marine Museum Owen.jpg ‘Perfectly fearless’

    Second of a two-part series on the Big Blow of November 1913

    July 8, 2012 1 Photo

  • cef Davidson launch.jpg Launching an industry

    Shortly after midnight on Sept. 26, 1941, German  U- boat No. 203 fired four torpedoes into convoy HG-73 north of the Azores.

    June 17, 2012 2 Photos

  • bicen whitla.jpg Ransom for an attorney’s little boy

    Tony Muscarelli, 13, and Willie Madden, 12, were walking down Depot Street, Ashtabula, on the evening of March 20, 1909, when a 30-year-old man accosted them from across the street.

    June 10, 2012 1 Photo

  • cdf bicent run 2.jpg Jumbo legend

    Kelsey’s Run rambles through the flatlands of Conneaut Township Park, carving graceful curves in the grassy area just north of Lake Road and slipping quietly under the two stone bridges in its final stretch toward Lake Erie.

    June 3, 2012 1 Photo

House Ads

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Andover Fire 1955
Carferry Ashtabula
AP Video