Groups Host Fellowship Event, Offer Free Soup and Coats

STAUNTON, Va. (WHSV) -- A few groups in Staunton are coming together to help people stay warm in this cold weather. Embark Staunton, Transition Staunton Augusta and AVA Restaurant and Wine Bar hosted an event on Saturday that leaders say was about more than just donations.

If you're walking around downtown Staunton, you'll notice the snow and ice left on benches and sidewalks.

"Freezing in the cold weather....Best thing that anybody could do to help somebody out really at this time," said Mike Brooks, who stays at Valley Mission.

Mike Brooks tries on coats and talks to friends at AVA Restaurant and Wine Bar.

"The economy's so bad, yeah, people are in need," said Brooks.

Others in need talk to local council members and eat a free bowl of soup.

"More than just drop off clothes or pick up clothes, but build relationships and listen to one another and hear from one another and I guess dream for a Staunton that we all hope can be," said Brittany Conley, who leads EMBARK Staunton.

People place ideas for a better Staunton on a dream tree. Mary Beth Morgan, who owns the restaurant, hosts a free soup night every week.

"We give away soup until we don't have anymore. We'd really like to be able to give away a whole pot of soup in a matter of an hour, which we were able to do," said Morgan.

Organizers hope there will be more events like this.

"Every person matters and that every person should be heard and should have the resources they need," said Conley.

Morgan will continue to host free soup night every Tuesday at AVA Restaurant and Wine Bar.


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