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Soup Kitchen Reviews

To me, the homeless scene is an easy way out for some people. To be honest, a lot of people that you see around us right now, if you came back in five years, they’d still be here. If you get free food you squander what little money you’ve got on...
VICE Staff
Κείμενο VICE Staff
1.3.06

Clockwise from left: Terry, Moses and Andreas. Photo by Alex Sturrock

BAPTIST CHURCH, KING’S CROSS: To be honest, I don’t think the kitchen is being run properly. I try to tell them subtly but do they listen? No. I try to tell them in a non-aggressive way. Sometimes you feel the portions are a bit small, and a bit of bacon wouldn’t hurt either. And you don’t bake hash browns, you fry them. One thing I don’t like is that this place is becoming “zero tolerance” towards people getting drunk. Some kitchens will have their grant docked because people are standing outside with all them beer cans. Petty things like that. To me, the homeless scene is an easy way out for some people. To be honest, a lot of people that you see around us right now, if you came back in five years, they’d still be here. If you get free food you squander what little money you’ve got on alcohol or drugs.—ANDREAS (We gave Andreas £10 for helping us out and the next time we saw him his nose was running and he was begging us for more more money.) HARE KRISNA VAN, YORK WAY: I enjoy the dahl they serve here because there’s no meat and it’s not overdoing your digestive system. If you’ve been on a bender and you’ve tucked into a big bit of meat it can send you a bit mad and groggy. Meat stays in your system for ages. So for people on the street, with their drink and drug problems, this is probably the best thing to eat. The only problem is this place is being used a lot by the Eastern Europeans and they’ve got no fucking respect. They get their houses quick because they’re refugees and it’s promoting racism in the homeless. The Eastern Europeans push their way into queues and act in an uncivilized way. They’re smart enough to pack 17 people in one house and then rent all the other properties out. Years ago, people would have got their bats out and sorted it out, but these people have seen their brothers killed in wars. They’re not fucking about. They’re real survivors. To what they’ve had and what they’re getting now, they must truly believe that God is here.—TERRY VAN IN LINCOLN’S FIELD, HOLBORN: Today I didn’t get so much. I got a cheese sandwich and a cake. Normally there is a van of West Indian people and when they come down you’ll get a good meal. It’s good food, as good as if your mum had cooked it. I’ve been coming down here for about a year and it keeps you going, you know. It’s good because they wrap the food up good for you if you have somewhere to go and eat in the warm. I speak to people that say they find it better off on the street, that they can go from place to place and they have no rent to pay. For me, I’ve spent one night on the street and after that night I’ve never spent another night on the street again. I ended up in hospital and nearly died from hypothermia.—MOSES