When Atmosphere Resort’s Soup Kitchen (ASK) opened 3 years ago, it was housed in a building belonging to the Scandinavian Missionary Village, in an impoverished area close to the Dumaguete dump site called Candua-ay. Close to the local school, our hopes were that the local children would be fed a nourishing lunch every day and be able to go to school instead of foraging for scraps on the dump site. With the help of the mothers of the children who do the cooking and organizing, the soup kitchen has flourished and feeds 85 children every day, year round.
Thanks to generous donations from Atmosphere guests, we have kept the soup kitchen going and it has been possible to hold graduation parties, Christmas parties, give birthday presents and we have also started up other livelihood projects in the area, like the piggy bank project. These all are part of Atmosphere’s Gives Forward program.
The soup kitchen building was originally built for village activities and the local community’s livelihood programs.
Recently – and quite sadly – the president of the barangay sought to control the use of the building and wanted to use the facilities in a way that potentially posed a threat to the running of the soup kitchen. Fortunately for all concerned, the land is governmentally owned and the captain of the local community generously approved that we could build our own new kitchen on a vacant lot just next door. With the kind donations from Atmosphere guests and the hard work and passion of Miss Mila, the coordinator of the soup kitchen, and the help from the local community, we are building a new kitchen for the parents to cook in and dining hall for the children to eat in.
ASK is such a successful project, every year seeing dozens of graduates leave and continue on to high school. Atmosphere Resort’s team, led by assistant Resort Manager Ruth Manulat, was adamant to find a resolution to keeping the soup kitchen going. We hope to see you here when you next visit Atmosphere Resort!