Unexpected hardships come in many forms, usually striking with little to no warning and often resulting in dire consequences. An unforeseen loss or cutback in employment, an illness or emergency leading to mounting medical bills, or even just a temporary setback for a variety of reasons have left some here in St. Mary’s County wondering where their next hot meal will come from.

Fortunately, for close to 25 years now the Loaves & Fishes Soup Kitchen at First Saints Church has served up nutritious lunches in Leonardtown and has sent brimming bags of grocery staples home with those who would otherwise have to do without.

There remains a lingering question or two, who helps the Soup Kitchen provide for others? Where do all of these meals, served with a smile and often a few words of comfort to anyone regardless of religion, race, or reason, come from? Besides a dedicated team who give of their own time to work tirelessly to keep the kitchen in operation, they also rely on generous donations from the community at large.

The First Friday Committee volunteers organize a drive to support this very important cause every November. Participating shops, art galleries, and restaurants donate a portion of their First Friday sales as well as host special cash collection boxes which are set up throughout the end of the month. By working together, we as a community can help those who need it most during the busy holiday season.

The Leonardtown Business Association (LBA) would like to thank everyone who attended the event last November 3rd in support of this special fundraiser and expresses their gratitude to all of the merchants who participated. Save the date to come join us December 1st from 5 to 8 PM for our next event with the theme of “Keep the Cheer Here”. Make Leonardtown your “Special Place To Be” every First Friday!

To learn more about services, volunteer opportunities, or to donate online to Loaves & Fishes visit www.firstsaints.org or call (301) 475-7200.