- Associated Press - Saturday, September 24, 2016

LAKE CHARLES, La. (AP) - Abraham’s Tent has been a local fixture in the Lake Charles area for many years. They serve hot meals to an average of 250 people six days a week. That number goes up to 300 once it is past the 15th of the month. The new Abraham’s Tent is located at 2424 Fruge Street. It has been open for two years.

“Any day that you can see people get fed, whether it’s adults or children, and know that they’ve been taken care of just for that time span, then that makes me happy,” said executive director Pearl Cole, speaking at the Westlake Rotary Club recently. She said every day she walks out of Abraham’s Tent happy because she has helped to feed people.

Cole has been the executive director of Abraham’s Tent for 27 years. She said her program works because of the community.

“There isn’t a time that we say we have a need that our community doesn’t respond to that need.”

Cole said every year that she has been with Abraham’s Tent, they have had turkeys from Thanksgiving to Easter. “I’m not cooking for Thanksgiving and Christmas. I’m cooking all year long.” She said those turkeys go into soups, gumbos, casseroles, you name it. “I never get a complaint.”

Cole said she has a 20-foot walk-in freezer to store all of the food they need. She also took all of the old freezers from the old Abraham’s Tent.

Cole said they made a good decision to buy two lots when building the new facility. Although they do not owe anything on the $1.4 million building, they owe $70,000 for the new parking lot.

“What I foresee for the future for us is that we’re going to have an increase in numbers. We’ll probably have to increase our hours.” Cole said 43 percent of their budget comes from the United Way and the rest comes from the community.

If you are an individual who would like to volunteer, Cole said you can come in any time. Large groups should call first. Volunteers typically start at 9 a.m.

Abraham’s Tent serves lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

They provide two city bus tokens to each person they serve. They have showers in the men’s and women’s bathrooms. They give away soap, toothpaste and various other items.

For more information, call 337-721-7211.

On Sunday, Oct. 9, in the Gordon’s Drugstore parking lot, The Southwest Louisiana Sportsmen for the Hungry, in affiliation with “Hunters for the Hungry” will host its annual “Clean Out The Freezer And Pantry Day” in Lake Charles to benefit Abraham’s Tent.

According to the event organizers, some of the items needed are: wrapped and labeled frozen meat and fish (wild and domestic), canned and boxed food, rice, cooking oil, seasonings, vegetables and paper goods.

A drive-thru service will be provided.


Information from: American Press, https://www.americanpress.com

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