Thursday, 24 April 2014, 4:35 am

Soup'sOn! for the soul

Rebekka Schmitt and David Gibson preparing soup. PHOTO BY NICK FEARNSBy NICK FEARNS
Staff Writer
Mark your calendars for the last Friday of January. Soup’sOn! will have its 12th annual fundraiser for the St. Kevin Food Bank Social Justice Scholarship.
A $10 ticket will allow you to sample as many different soups as you wish or socialize for the one-hour block.
“I wanted to do something for kids who were concerned about improving the lives of others through various projects in school – those who work in the community in their spare time above and beyond what they are expected to do,” says Joe Barkovich, event co-ordinator.
The event was started in 2002 “at the time I was the co-ordinator for the food bank at St. Kevins.”
“I had the idea one day that we could be doing things to help deserving students. After some discussion we came up with the idea of having a soup event.”
Since then, Soup’sOn! has raised $28,000 in scholarships for deserving high school students in the Welland and Fonthill area.
Barkovich says any student attending high school in those areas is eligible for the scholarship, provided the student is Catholic. The student does not have to attend a Catholic school.
Students also have to provide proof that they will be attending a post-secondary school and agree to an interview with the scholarship committee.
Ticket-goers have one hour to sample as much soup as they want from many schools in the area, including Niagara College’s Canadian Food and Wine Institute.
“Soup'sOn! is truly one of the community events that I always look forward to attending at this time of year,” says Niagara College President Dan Patterson.
“It is also a great example of the college working with the culinary high schools to put on the best soups one could ever experience. The array and quality of the soups always attracts large numbers.”
David Gibson, a Niagara College professor for 29 years, says lots of students volunteer for the event.
“There’s never a shortage of students. Quite often I’ve had to come in with a hat and draw the names out.“
The college will be bringing two soups: a corn and pepper chowder with barbeque chicken and a Scottish leek and potato soup.
Gibson says the event provides great experience for the students and will require several hours of prep time.
“It could take from four hours to eight hours to do the preparation. It’s a learning experience for them. They are used to the small portions in the lab. Now they’re doing 40 litres.”
Rebekka Schmitt, a first-year student participating in the event, says, “I’m excited for it. I did it in high school. It was a really, really fun event to do.”
Tickets cost $10 and are available at St. Kevin’s office before weekend masses. You can get tickets on Saturday at 5 p.m. or on Sunday at 8:30 a.m., 10 a.m., 11:30 a.m. and 5 p.m.
Tickets are also available by contacting the ticket convener, Mim Gibbons, at 905-734-8486. St. Kevin’s is located at 307 Niagara St.

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