ELKINS - The Davis Memorial Presbyterian Church in Elkins prepared its first Community Kitchen meal Saturday.
Meals will be held once a month through the new year, open to anyone regardless of financial situation.
Tate Summerfield, the coordinator for the Community Kitchen, said there are people who may need the meals for a number of reasons.
Betty Legg, Phillip Becker and Tate Summerfield prepare meals in the Community Kitchen at the Davis Memorial Presbyterian Church in Elkins. Not pictured is Bryan Summerfield. (The Inter-Mountain photo by Lynn Setler)
"The face of hunger is more than just financial status," Summerfield said. "There are a lot of people who are not being served because they are unable to help themselves."
"Our only criteria is that the person is in need," Summerfield said. "If we help anybody who is truly in need of a meal, we have done our jobs."
Summerfield said there are also people in the area who need help but don't qualify for other assistance programs.
"We feel that there are some areas of people who could be served that aren't currently being served and don't have access to programs they could benefit from," she said. "There are a lot of people who are not eligible for a lot of programs due to the location where they are living."
Summerfield noted some people may have other issues preventing them from being able to prepare meals.
"There are just so many factors that come into preparing a meal and (the) benefit of having one prepared. We don't want to duplicate what Common Ground does. They have an exceptional program. Our goal is to partner with them to help fulfill a need and reach more people who may need assistance," Summerfield said.
All meals are take out. People can take multiple meals home for their family if not everyone is able to get out to pick up the food. Summerfield said delivery may be available if there is a need.
"It is not just for individuals, it is also for families, so a person can come out and take multiple meals," Summerfield said.
On Saturday, more than 100 meals were prepared and distributed, each including baked chicken, side dishes, a bread item and dessert.
Community Kitchen officials ask that anyone interested contact them at least 24 hours in advance to allow for an accurate number of how many meals must be prepared.
Anyone wishing to donate can contact Summerfield at 304-704-9455 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
"Any donation is welcome whether it's food, monetary or time," Summerfield said. "Any donation made is greatly appreciated."
The next date for the Community Kitchen program will be Oct. 20.