April 1, 2023

Bread ‘n’ Soup night generates $50,000 in 18 years


Since 1998, USU Eastern served bread and soup to the campus and community as a fund raiser for the Carbon County Food Bank. This year, over 630 patrons attended Bread ‘n’ Soup Night resulting in a $4,000 donation to the organization. This brings the 18 year total to $52,000.
“We are so appreciative of the continued community support for this worthwhile fundraiser on behalf of those less fortunate in our community,” said Terry Johnson, Eastern’s Serving Utah Network director. “Not only do these Bread ‘n’ Soup nights raise much-needed funding for the Carbon County Food Bank, but they’re also a wonderful opportunity for many in our community to come together, to serve, enjoy good food and give thanks one with another.”
For three consecutive Mondays in November, USU Eastern’s Dining Service, under the direction of Gillan Mills-Bishop, prepared three home-style soups for patrons. According to head chef, Chrystal Thomas, the kitchen whipped up 20 gallons of each variety of soup per night, amounting to about 180 gallons of soup each week. “That’s a lot of soup.”
Mills-Bishop makes extensive efforts to persuade vendors to donate ingredients, and he and his staff donate 10 hours each Monday so that more profits be made. “We love being a part of the community,” he notes, “and Bread ‘n’ Soup gives us the opportunity to be our best.”
The idea that USU Eastern would surpass the $50,000-donation goal never crossed the minds of those who began Bread ‘n’ Soup Night 18 years ago. “When I first brought the concept to campus, I never would have dreamed that we’d reach this kind of financial milestone. It’s amazing and humbling to see how far we’ve come,” said Carrie Icard, associate professor of English.
Icard notes that the first year she pitched the idea, the food service director turned her down. Several years later, personnel and opinions changed, and with the SUN Center Director, Kathy Murray, Bread ‘n’ Soup Night was launched fall semester 1998.
Icard laughed when she recalled that she had to recruit her husband and campus friends to help set up tables and chairs, but even on that first night, slightly over 100 people showed up, and the College of Eastern Utah (USU Eastern) donated $1,000 to the Carbon County Food Bank the first year.
“We are indebted to so many wonderful people who have volunteered and supported Bread ‘n’ Soup over the years,” Icard stated, “we really mean it when we say that we couldn’t have done it without them.”
The long association between USU Eastern’s Bread ‘n’ Soup Night and the Carbon County Food Bank combines all the best qualities of service, joining campus and community to help those in need, she said.

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