Communal kitchens an option to support those most in need – El Sol de Salamanca

The communal kitchens are inclusive spaces and a program dedicated to older adults, “single grandmothers” (a term coined by Paula Martínez to describe grandmothers who care for their grandchildren because their mother goes to work), children, the sick and others will benefit low-income residents with groceries.

Located in the Libertad neighborhood on Timoteo Lozano Boulevard, this dining room is in charge of coordinator Paula Martínez and six other volunteers. Five years ago they were invited by the former governor of Guanajuato Miguel Márquez Márquez and the former mayor’s team. Héctor López Santillana, “Leaving the broom for the bucket” since they are “broom club‘, a casual job where women sweep public roads.

Doña Paula, as she is known locally, spends most of her time doing social work.

What motivates me is helping the community, seeking support for all the people who have nothing to eat, knocking door to door or seeking support in clubs, with people, MPs and whoever to make people smile see.“.

The manager recalls that before the pandemic, about 30 people ate at the facilities and now up to 300 people get a meal consisting of broad beans, lentils, soup, whole wheat bread, broccoli, zucchini, and if there’s a budget, they will cooked. a pozole of chayote with corn, sometimes the volunteers cooperate to buy a little chick and give them something else to eat as the DIF only supports food deliveries.

What is behind a community dining room

There are so many stories to tell, each one very special, but the truth is that the majority of older people depend on what they get in the community dining room, they only ask for their voluntary cooperation, there are people who don’t can give money, there are others who contribute from three pesos to ten pesos“.

Doña Paula remembers the story of Ximenita and her mother, neighbors of the El Refugio neighborhood, both prostrate in wheelchairs, they had nothing to eat, they had no one to take care of them, they both lived in miserable conditions.

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When we found out that Ximenita, a 27-year-old girl with the mental age of a six-year-old girl, had nothing to eat, we decided to bring her some food every day and go to her house to clean it since they were both in wheelchairs and couldn’t move, they lived between rubbish and rubbish, when we brought them their food they smiled, after the pandemic we didn’t know what happened to them, they took them away but we know it not where“.

Another anecdote he recalls is that of an elderly man named Marcelino: “Every day that he got ready to go to dinner, he was happy to be told that he smelled very good“.

Marcelino no longer goes to the communal kitchen because now he can walk, he used to go because his children didn’t take care of him before, but now with his inadequacy, a son already takes care of him.

Another story he recalls is that parents who were the breadwinners of the home lost their jobs after the pandemic and left with their wife and children to support themselves. With sadness, shame and desperation they ate what they had been offered since In the absence of money, there was no other option but to eat in these rooms, arguing that the children were hungry and they could not tell them that I was yours don’t have to give anything.