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Community Kitchen of Myrtle Beach: Fighting Hunger with Love and Hope

By Christian Burney

The Community Kitchen of Myrtle Beach is unlike any other. It operates every day of every week, with a hard working staff dedicated to helping those less fortunate. "It is about taking care of one of the basic needs we all have: to eat hot nutritious meals," explains Deacon Peter M. Casamento, M.A., Executive Director. "We tailor our services to the needs of our guests, whether chronic or temporary."

Casamento explains how the chronically poor typically lack support systems that are accessible to more financially stable individuals. Mental illness, substance abuse, physical disabilities- all are relatively common holes that the homeless struggle to climb out of. These problems can lead to emotional instability and low self-esteem, which makes indulgence in further substance abuse a more common outcome. It's a tragic machine of perpetual motion.

The Community Kitchen of Myrtle Beach measures its success by the number of guests they serve. To date, the Community Kitchen has successfully provided a hot, nutritious meal to each and every individual that has came in looking for one. "Our objective will only be met when there are no more hungry people in our community," says Casamento.

The face of hunger is not just the homeless person on the street, it is the working poor, our senior citizens, our Veterans and children. Many do not look any different from you or I and many are highly educated people. The difference between them and us is that they are less privileged. In Horry County one in five people are hungry.

The Community Kitchen relies on approximately 80 to 100 volunteers to prepare food and serve it to the hundreds of homeless that hobble through its halls on a daily basis. "We have two shifts Monday-Friday," explains Casamento. "The first shift is from 7:00 am to 10:00 am and the second shift is from 10:00 am to 1:30 pm. Volunteers need no experience. Volunteers like our guests are welcome to assist us in our mission."

The Community Kitchen of Myrtle Beach makes no profits. Apart from the Executive Director and the kitchen manager, the staff earns no wages. The people work for one cause, and one cause only: to provide food, love, and support to the hungry. Even with its high success, the Community Kitchen's job is not finished. As Casamento put it, "our objective will only be met when there are no more hungry people in our community. Too eliminate the hunger problem is beyond our scope. Our mission is to respond to the need of those who are hungry."

The Community Kitchen of Myrtle Beach last year fed 130,774 of those who were hungry. Our mission is only possible through the generosity of people like yourselves who want to make a difference. We receive no funding from the City of Myrtle Beach, the County or the State, yet we feed those in the City and surrounding areas that are hungry. All who come to us are fed hot nutritional meals free of charge. Help us to continue in feeding those who are hungry, make a difference and please donate today.

You can volunteer to lend a helping hand to the Community Kitchen of Myrtle Beach or donate to their cause from the Community Kitchen's website. Or you can step by in person at 1411 Mr. Joe White Ave Myrtle Beach, SC.

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About The Author

Christian Burney will soon graduate with a BFA in writing from the Savannah College of...

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