The Soup Kitchen
Our Impact Why We Exist
The Soup kitchen is a remarkable place. For more than 30 years, we have remained true to founders Murray and Edna Black’s vision: we serve soup to the hungry. About 150-250 hungry people per day, from Monday to Friday, come to eat. No one is turned away and no one leaves hungry.
The Soup Kitchen is operated by the "9-10 Club: Serving Soup to the Hungry", a registered non-profit, non-denominational society.
Our Story What We Do
In the early 1980s, after watching two men searching for food in a restaurant dumpster, the late Murray Black and his wife Edna discovered that Victoria had no organization dedicated to feeding the hungry. Murray and Edna wondered if they could dedicate themselves to feed the hungry. They thought they would start by providing one meal a day, and decided the meal would be a hearty soup. Murray and Edna knew they would need a facility to serve the soup. Their search for a suitable facility led them to St. Andrew’s Cathedral where Monsignor Philip Hanley, the Rector at the time, agreed to allow them the use of the Cathedral basement to serve soup to the hungry.
Murray and Edna wanted their guests to feel that they belonged to something like a club, and thus the "9-10 Club: Serving Soup to the Hungry" was born. It opened on November 12, 1982. Initially, the kitchen operated Monday through Saturday, between 9:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. On its first day, the kitchen served six people. Numbers increased rapidly, though, making it necessary to extend the hours from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m., but “9-10” remained a part of the name.
At first, soup was made offsite by Murray, Edna, and a few volunteers. Occasionally the old Dominion Hotel supplied soup. Recipes were developed for the kitchen (some even provided by the chefs at the Empress Hotel) to feed the growing numbers. In time, with the generosity of donors, the Cathedral’s basement kitchen was fitted with a professional stove and a commercial steam kettle. By the early 1990s, The Soup Kitchen (as the charity became known) was serving well over 100 people a day, sometimes as many as 400. Fortunately, donations and volunteers also increased to meet the need to feed the hungry.
Today, The Soup Kitchen serves from 150 to 250 people per day. The kitchen has over 100 volunteers who pick up donations; prepare the fresh vegetables that go into the soups; cook the soup; prepare food in the kitchen, serve soup and donated “goodies” to clients; and wash dishes in the commercial dishwasher. Like all food-serving organizations, The Soup Kitchen is subject to safety inspections, and many volunteers are “Food Safe” certified.
The Soup kitchen is a remarkable place. Staffed by volunteers and funded by community donations, for more than 30 years the kitchen has remained true to Murray and Edna Black’s vision: serving soup to the hungry.
Our Programs How We Do It
The Soup Kitchen relies on the support of about 100 volunteers from throughout the Greater Victoria community. Volunteers usually work one morning a week and perform a variety of tasks including: picking up donations; preparing vegetables; making soup; serving soup, beverages and goodies to guests; bussing tables and washing dishes.
What You Can Do
The Soup Kitchen has been quietly serving soup to Victoria’s hungry for more than 30 years. If you would like to help us serve soup to the hungry, please consider donating through the "Donate Now" link at right or by sending a cheque to the "9-10 Club: Serving Soup to the Hungry" at 740 View Street, Victoria, BC, V8W 1J8. A tax receipt is issued for all donations.