CORNWALL, Ontario – The Agapè Centre held their Big Ask fundraiser at Cline House gallery on Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2019.
The goal of the fundraiser was to encourage guests to commit to monthly pledges for a year. There was no suggested minimum pledge, but Johanne Couture, Executive Director of the Centre, explained that the need is great during the summer.
“The need is always the same, the strain is always there in the summer,” she said.
Couture explained how 70 members of the local business community were invited to the event on Tuesday night. She said that a goal of the evening was to put a face to the Agapè Centre’s services.
To do that, she invited Sean McGowan to address the gathered audience.
McGowan began using the Agapè Centre’s soup kitchen last October, shortly after that, McGowan became a volunteer at the centre.
“I wanted to contribute back because of how amazing they were to me,” he said.
Later, McGowan was offered a job by the Agapè Centre in their soup kitchen.
“It has given me the opportunity to have a fresh start to my life,” he said. “It gives me a purpose when I wake up in the morning.”
The Agapè Centre’s soup kitchen serves roughly 150 individuals daily. Their food bank serves around 1,700 individuals every month.
The Agapè Centre’s annual budget is nearly $800,000 and they do not receive annual funding from any level of government, however, in 2019 the centre did receive $10,000 from the City of Cornwall to support their soup kitchen.