Coffee Hour: Monday – Friday 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Prior to lunch, we offer a coffee hour which not only provides an opportunity for socialization but also access to wrap around services in our community with partner agencies.
Curbside/Takeout Service: Monday – Friday 10:30 AM – 1:00 PM
Inside Dining Service: Monday – Friday 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM
Come and enjoy a delicious meal in a bistro-like setting. Table service is provided to each guest. Open year-round, we serve an average of 200 guests onsite through inside dining and curbside/takeout service. There is a small daily pantry in our dining room.
Kindness Community Market
Monday – Thursday 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM, Friday 10:00 AM – 3:00 PM
The Kindness Community Market enables guest choice for needed food, choosing from a variety of shelf stable foods, meats, fresh produce, frozen, and dairy products. Guests are able to access the pantry once per week and obtain food based on their household size.
Home Delivery Meal Service
Partnering with DoorDash and dedicated volunteers, we provide weekly meals to homebound seniors without transportation across Waldo County. We average over 150 deliveries per week.
Emergency Food Baskets
We can supply supplemental groceries to individuals on an emergency basis after operating hours as needed.
Help Yourself Shelves at Maine Health Centers
We have partnered with Maine Health to provide food access points in local health centers. This program increases our reach across the county for those in need. By providing healthy shelf stable food products and access to fresh local vegetables, BSK in partnership with Maine Health, promotes wellness while combating hunger in our communities.
Farm Box Program
We are working to expand our farm box program to working families, which usually runs from July to October. The goal of this project is to make Maine grown organic foods accessible to families in need in Midcoast Maine by meeting working low-income families halfway on the cost of a weekly customizable farm share. This project will formalize our work to collaborate with Daybreak Growers Alliance to offer sliding scale farm boxes to our guests and allow an opportunity to sustain this programming indefinitely. One focus of this work will be to engage and secure support for ongoing funding for this programming from local businesses. Specifically, by engaging employers to apply existing flexible health benefit packages and/or addition of staff benefits to cover the cost of reduced cost shares for employees. The target population is low income working families, but by encouraging employers to adopt companywide benefits that can apply to this program, the impact for farm viability is further magnified. This program increases market opportunity for area farms and the work they do to regeneratively sustain our soils, waters and farmland.
Evening Meal Program
We also partner with local restaurants and catering companies to provide fully prepared meals for working families on a weekly basis. The meals feed an average family of four. The average median income of these families is $48,640 annually. 80% of these families do not qualify for any type of public assistance, yet 72% of them report they are concerned about basic household needs such a food, housing, childcare, healthcare, and heat. This program usually runs from December through March.
Children’s Food Programs
Working collaboratively with Community Food for Children, Literacy Volunteers, and a variety of other local groups, we feed children in RSU 20 & 71 providing breakfast and lunch when school meals are not available during the summer months. During delivery of this program, we also provide educational and enrichment opportunities to keep children active and engaged. When school is in session, we sponsor and support HUSH (Help Us Stop Hunger). The High School Alternative education program (Vikings Alternative, V-ALT for short) coordinate this program as part of their project-based curriculum. V-Alt students (grades 9-12) unload deliveries, organize the pantry, take inventory, and pack and deliver the bags of food to K-5 students each week. The program provides a weekend bag of food which contains two breakfast, three lunch/dinner meals, as well as snacks, that young children can prepare and eat independently. We also support a school food pantry that middle and high school students can access to obtain food and personal hygiene items. We have recently added monthly produce distributions, accessible to all RSU 20 families.
Partnerships & Collaborations
Belfast Soup Kitchen recognizes that we cannot do this work alone. We work in partnership with several community agencies to enable access to wrap around services to mitigate the associated circumstances surrounding food insecurity. Our community partners engage with our guests and meet them where they are through scheduled and requested visits to the soup kitchen. Collaboration exists with services provided by Belfast Public Health, Belfast General Assistance, WCAP, University of Maine Cooperative Extension, SNAP-Ed, WIC, food pantries across Waldo County, and area law enforcement. We also continue to work with Waldo County Bounty, Daybreak Growers Alliance, Waldo County Garden, GSFB, Hannaford, Belfast Coop and several local farmers to source food. We operate regional storage units to provide storage for all hunger relief organizations across Waldo County. Use of the facility is provided to food pantries at no cost, with BSK paying for the electricity costs to run these units. We are also continuing to brainstorm ideas with other Belfast area food pantries to consolidate resources to better provide for our communities. We work side by side with food pantries across the county to make sure everyone has access to the food they need. For example, we have sent food to Islesboro to help our neighbors on the island community, and with approval from Good Shepherd Food Bank, we have designated one of our Hannaford Fresh Rescue pick up days to another food pantry in the area. We continue to share with other pantries in need when we are able.