$1,000 donation for Feed ‘Em Soup comes as a surprise for organization

By Hailey Kurth

DeKalb charity organization Feed ‘Em Soup was pleasantly surprised Sunday when they logged onto their Facebook page and saw a local business decided to donate $1,000 to the organization and challenged others to donate also.

Great Clips Owner Rita Hutchins responded to a wall post on the Feed ‘Em Soup Facebook page asking for cleaning supplies, metal shelving, folding tables and refrigeration with: “Great Clips in DeKalb will donate $1,000 to help this AWESOME organization get what they need. We challenge anyone reading this to donate what you can as well.”

Feed ‘Em Soup President Randi Kennedy said she was completely shocked, and it was really awesome of Hutchins to donate.

“The response we’ve had from the community is great,” Kennedy said. “And we’re very appreciative of her thinking of us and challenging the community to do the same.”

Feed ‘Em Soup Director Derek Gibbs said he was overwhelmed by the unexpected donation, but in a good way.

“When I started telling a couple people, we all were kind of like, ‘Is it serious?’,” Gibbs said. “And it absolutely is. We couldn’t believe it when we read it.”

Feed ‘Em Soup recently moved to a permanent location, 122 S. First St., and is now looking for items to get the place up and running. They’re asking for items like refrigerators, silverware, paper towels and non-perishable food, Gibbs said.

“If people do decide to give money, we’re going to spend that on things for the building,” Gibbs said. “But either way, there’s so much stuff that we need because we’re growing so fast. Now that we’re in the new building, whether it’s money or more items, we’re going to put it to good use.”

The concept for Feed ‘Em Soup is about two years old, but the group has officially been in operation for just over one year, Gibbs said.

Feed ‘Em Soup provides many things for people in need. Gibbs said they have a free clothing closet, food pantry, occasional live music, a kids program and meals, all of which is completely free.

For more information, go to the Feed ‘Em Soup website or Facebook page to read its story and see what can be done to help out. Feed ‘Em Soup is staying optimistic about the challenge made on their Facebook by Hutchins.

“So far, it’s just been [Great Clips]. But they just made that announcement in the past couple of days,” Kennedy said. “Hopefully we will see some sort of a response.”