Free lunch today for hungry, homeless

The Kauai Community Alliance, Continuum of Care for homeless services, and the County of Kauai will host “Hope in the Park: Information and Free Lunch,” starting at 11 a.m. today on the lawn of the Historic County Building in observance of Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week.

Debra de Luis of Catholic Charities Hawaii and chair of Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, said the event aims to bring attention to homelessness and all the work that has been done in the community to end homelessness, one household at a time.

“In honor of Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, the Westside Christian Center is hosting a meal Thursday,” de Luis said. “On Sunday, they will distribute food bags along with Aloha Church.”

The event seeks to raise awareness of homelessness with information tables about services, and provide a meal for folks —houseless and housed — who are interested in sharing with folks from all walks of life, and provide some basic services on-site.

Some of the services offered include blood pressure readings by public health nurses. Toiletries goody bags will be distributed by Women in Need, and The Salvation Army Lihue Corps will provide chili and rice meals and bless the food.

Ho‘ola Lahui staff will accept applications for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or food stamps, and Medicaid, and Catholic Charities will host drawings for gift cards and a monthly bus pass.

“This is a midday break, free lunch, and an opportunity to relax in the park,” de Luis said. “There will be goody bags, prize drawings, and the event is suitable for all ages, keiki to kupuna.”

Participating agencies include the County Housing Agency, state Department of Veterans Affairs, Catholic Charities Hawaii, Kauai Economic Opportunity, Women in Need, the YWCA of Kauai Domestic Violence Program, Family Life Center, Malama Pono Healthcare, Hale ‘Opio Kauai, Mental Health Kokua, Steadfast Housing Development Corp., and U.S. Veterans Initiative.

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