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What could be simpler than making the world a better place, spreading love and generosity, with a bowl of soup?! That’s right, kindness comes in many forms and in this case, the theme is all about giving a “Hug in a Bowl”. And there’s something wholly satisfying about enjoying a warm, hearty cup or bowl of soup that has been lovingly prepared and shared by someone who cares on Soup It Forward Day. 

History of Soup It Forward Day

The idea behind Soup It Forward Day came through the creative work of Soup Sisters, a non-profit organization in Canada that has been working hard since 2009 to address the hunger crisis. With the knowledge that soup is one of the most nourishing, well-balanced meals that can also be offered in large quantities and is affordably priced, this group started Soup It Forward Day in 2018 with the purpose of encouraging more people to provide soup donations to charities on the front lines.

The term ‘soup it forward’ is a play on the phrase ‘pay it forward’ that was first made popular in the 20th century but became part of pop culture more recently through the movie of the same name that was released in 2000. With the idea of making the world a better place and caring for people first (rather than “paying it back”), in this case, the concept has been applied to sharing a meal of soup with someone who needs it.

With the hope of continuing to tackle the rampant food insecurity that is sweeping through communities, Soup It Forward Day encourages individuals, families and groups to get involved in three simple ways: making soup, sharing soup and giving soup.

How to Celebrate Soup It Forward Day

Several types of opportunities exist for getting involved with Soup It Forward Day, getting started with some of these ideas:

Host a Soup-Making Event

Groups, businesses and others who want to participate in Soup It Forward Day might choose a soup-making event that fosters friendship and community while making a difference for someone who needs a hot meal. Gather donations for supplies and consider partnering with a cooking school or others with industrial kitchens to make and then deliver “Hugs in a Bowl”. Those in Canada can find more information about locations that sponsor these events through the Soup Sisters website.

Support a Soup Kitchen or Food Bank

Even those who aren’t interested in a cooking event can be involved with Soup It Forward Day by supporting a local soup kitchen, food bank, homeless shelter or other place that serves food to those in need. Contact the organization to find out what kind of donations they need – often canned soup is welcomed – and then organize a food drive to boost the supplies that are needed. While this day takes place in the early spring, many food banks find themselves short on supplies in mid-winter, so that might be another good time to act!

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