Starting next week, the Community Kitchen will serve breakfast daily. Breakfasts typically include hard boiled eggs, cereal, milk, fruit, and a granola bar. Anyone who is hungry is welcome to get a meal, and you may even bring a meal home for a family member or neighbor.
Our guests have been asking us for years to serve more meals each week in the Community Kitchen, and it only took a pandemic make it happen! I'm only sort of kidding. Since the pandemic began, Ecolibrium3 has created and continually updated a food resource guide for people who are struggling in our community. When we looked closely at that guide we realized that there was not a breakfast available on Tuesday or Thursday morning for a general population. We decided to fill that gap.
Damiano is the largest emergency meal provider in Northeastern Minnesota, and we take our responsibility seriously. We closed the building back in March for safety and redirected staff to the food service programs to ensure that we continue to feed our community during this crisis. We have recently received grants from several new partners and increased funds from current partners and donors, and we must ensure that we are using those resources in the most effective way possible for everyone in our community who is hungry.
We are also serving a few hot to-go meals each week. It took us a little while to get the resources we needed to provide hot meals to-go, such as a warmer that the DECC generously loaned to us. Now guests can get some of their favorite home cooking by Flora, including spaghetti, macaroni and cheese, and pork chops and mashed potatoes. These are complete meals including a fresh salad, roll/bread, fruit, milk, and dessert.
It's challenging and disappointing for staff and guests that we can't open the building safely yet, but we are excited to be able to offer more breakfasts as well as some of our guests' favorite hot meals again.