NEW IBERIA, La. (KLFY) — An Acadiana soup kitchen has been forced to temporarily close for a week.
The executive director of St. Francis Diner in New Iberia says the food supply is nearly gone.
Juanita Lewis says she’s been with the diner for 22 years and never has she seen the food supply so critically low.
Lewis says she is worried for the families who the diner might have to turn away.
“The food that’s in storage is nearly gone. I’ve never seen the pantry rooms look like this.”
She says there has to be enough food to feed at least 175 people a day and that anything less means not everyone gets fed.
“My biggest thing is some kids aren’t always be in school. They are home sick and they are here with their parents to eat. My main focus is on the elderly. Some have told me they don’t know if they should buy medicine or buy food,” Lewis added.
So for now, Lewis has decided to close the diner until next week saying the temporary closure will allow time to try to restock.
“As of today, I’m closed this week from Tuesday until September 12. I am going to try to go to the stores and get what I can get so that we can continue feeding.”
She says the diner is a soup kitchen driven by donations and volunteers.
“We have a paid staff of four. I’m trying. I’m just trying.”