Soup kitchen gets $2,000 award from AT&T

Soup kitchen gets $2,000 award from AT&T

CHAMPAIGN — The cost of feeding more than 200 people a day adds up, but Daily Bread Soup Kitchen got some help.

AT&T Illinois named the organization the winner of one of its Investing in Illinois awards, and that comes with $2,000 to help carry on Daily Bread's mission of feeding the homeless and poor in the Champaign-Urbana area.

Daily Bread Treasurer Stevie Bennett said the money will be used to help foot monthly expenses, which total $12,000 to $13,000 for rent, food, utilities and other costs. All labor is provided by volunteers, she said.

Daily Bread rents space from New Covenant Fellowship, 124 W. White St., C.

At New Covenant, Daily Bread provides 200 to 250 people a daily hot lunch on weekdays and provides a sack lunch to take home. Daily Bread serves from a mobile soup kitchen on weekends.

State Rep. Naomi Jakobsson, D-Urbana, and state Sen. Mike Frerichs, D-Champaign, nominated Daily Bread for the $2,000 award, according to AT&T.

AT&T has made more than $21 million in philanthropic contributions in Illinois between 2008 and 2011, according to company spokesman Eric Robinson.

Bennett said Daily Bread would like to be able to save money for a place of its own one day, but the biggest item on its wish list right now is for donated storage space to be able to stock up on deals and free items available at the Eastern Illinois Foodbank.

What would be ideal would be more storage space handy to the kitchen, she said.

"Right now, we rent a storage facility, but that's out by Prairie Gardens," Bennett added.

Daily Bread plans to be open for a holiday meal on Christmas day from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., and anyone is welcome, she said.