Soup Sisters and Broth Brothers Society
Our Story Why We Exist
Sharon Hapton a life-long nurturer and soup-maker, always believed that two of society’s most prevalent issues, domestic abuse and youth homelessness would benefit from the care and warmth that comes in a bowl of soup. She launched in Calgary in 2009 and made her vision a reality. Today Soup Sisters operates in 21 Cities across Canada. Over 40,000 participants have ensured delivery of 750,000 servings of nurturing and nourishing soup.
A powerful message that says 'we care' is being delivered each month to over 40 emergency shelters and youth shelters from coast to coast. The Soup Sisters ‘hug in a bowl’ prepared from the hearts and hands of Soup Sisters and Broth Brothers across Canada makes Soup Sisters a leader in awareness and advocacy on the issues of domestic abuse and youth homelessness.
The Soup Sisters ‘hug in a bowl’ prepared from the hearts and hands of Soup Sisters and Broth Brothers across Canada makes Soup Sisters a leader in awareness and advocacy on the issues of domestic abuse and youth homelessness
Our Impact What We Do
An innovative social enterprise, Soup Sisters is 100% volunteer driven at the event level. What makes us clearly unique is that there is no other organization that reaches women and children in crisis at the ground level with the simple virtue of kindness. While many organizations support shelters with much needed funding these funds often times go unnoticed by the very demographic we are all striving to assist. Not only do our monthly donations of soup decreases the operating costs of the Shelters we support by 18-20% thereby allowing these funds to be put back into much needed programming and support services, it is important to note that the shelters often attest that our soups provide self-esteem to shelter residents at this time of crisis in their live where they believe that no one cares. The message that comes with the soup is hugely impactful and a testament to a caring community.
- “I have been working in the anti-violence sector for many years and the abuse often presents the same in that the women are told by their abusers that they are worth nothing. Soup Sisters is not just about the soup. It is more than caring, it is about saving lives when people start believing that they are worthy of life free of fear and that they are not dumb, stupid and ugly. So while Soup-makers pay, chop, cook and write, we hand the soup to the women and tell them someone paid to make this for you because they care about you – know that you have changed a life. “
According to the Canadian Institute of Health Research, almost 1.7 million households (13%) experienced some level of food insecurity. This food insecurity affects one in six children across Canada. According to food insecurity policy research, Canada does not have any coordinated governmental policies or programs designated to address this. During our history, we have:
- provided 750,000 servings of soup to women, children and youth in crisis;
- produced soup for local shelters at over 21 cities across Canada and the United States;
- partnered with over 30 residential shelters to provide residents with delicious soup;
- in 2015, arranged for 468 soup making events that has resulted in a network of 40,000 soup sisters and broth brothers.
SOUP RECIPIENTS in CALGARY:
- When some citizens participate in our soup making, they are supporting the women and children at the Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter and Awo Taan Healing Lodge.
- We knew of deserving young people on the path toward believing in themselves and imagining new possibilities. With this, some participants helped to support The Doorway.
- Soup Sisters Blue Flame in Calgary has a beautiful, intimate kitchen space at the ATCO Blue Flame and has, in its history, helped to support the YWCA Mary Dover House;
- Nearly half a million women, children and youth have been supported by us in the last 8 years through our ongoing events and special events such as The Big Stir.
Soup for Syrians: Our way of welcoming Syrian Refuges to our City was with the Gift of Soup! Earlier this year, we provided 10,000+ servings of soup in Calgary and Ottawa to welcome Syrian refugees to Canada prepared from the hearts and hands of local Soup Sisters and Broth Brothers.
Our first bestselling cookbook came out in 2012, followed by a second edition in 2014, and our next cookbook Souper Kids will be available in Fall 2017. All of our books published by Random House have been a source of income towards our operations.
Soup Sisters Founder Sharon Hapton was awarded the Meritorious Service Award by the Governor General last March 2016. The Meritorious Service Decorations were created by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II to recognize an individual for a remarkable achievement accomplished over a limited period of time. See link: Meritorious Service Medal
Sharon Hapton also received the Global Television and YWCA Women of Vision award in February 2011 and was honoured nationally by Chatelaine Magazine as Everyday Hero and Woman of the Year. Most recently she was profiled as Global Television's “Everyday Hero” and her soup social enterprise was featured in Women of Influence Magazine.
Our Programs How We Do It
The concept is simple. Soup Sisters are year-round programs where each participant pays a $55 registration fee to join in a soup-making event at a local professional kitchen under the guidance of a chef facilitator. Each event produces approximately 150-200 servings of nourishing soup that are delivered fresh to a local shelter almost immediately. Events are social evenings with lively conversation, chopping, laughter and warm kitchen camaraderie that culminate in a simple, sit-down supper of soup, salad, bread and wine for all participants. Soup Sisters collaborates with cooking schools, restaurants, golf courses, and hotels eliminating the need for our own kitchen facility. We have minimal administration costs/wages to manage our daily operations remotely with volunteer coordinators, eliminating the need for office space. No bricks, no mortar – just a simple plan to collaborate at every level and provide much needed nutrition and a message that says ‘we care’.
SOUPER KIDS: Peer-to-peer events centered around young people making, sharing and donating soup to their peers in crisis. These youth based soup-making events have begun in Calgary and not only celebrate youth engagement and promote entry level philanthropy amongst young Calgarian’s, but they enable Soup Sisters to further meet our mandate of providing sustenance and moral support to young people in our community that have chosen to leave an abusive environment while in turn offering encouragement to those who work at the grassroots level to help end the tragic cycle of domestic violence.
SUMMER STOCK: In keeping with our recipe for making, sharing and donating soup, we have expanded our soup-making family to include youth at summer camps in our volunteer soup making sessions. Summer Stock aims at conveying a message of healthy relationships that foster respect for one another all while being delivered within a safe and supportive youth-focused environment.
MISO SOUP: a new Soup Sisters initiative that provides a means to offer fresh soup through local Food Banks to families and individuals living with food insecurity [Money In Soup Out].
Our Requests What You Can Do
Join us in 'creating a stir' across North America!
Anyone can be a Soup Sister and a Broth Brother! Simply join us in one of our soup-making sessions that will provide hundreds of litres of nourishing and nurturing soup to women and children fleeing domestic abuse and family violence. Click here to see how we turn your dollars into 'comfort in a bowl'.
Help us to keep the soup flowing with MISO - Money In Soup Out. MISO is a new Soup Sisters initiative that provides a means to offer fresh soup through local Food Banks to families and individuals living with food insecurity.
Your fresh soup purchase goes directly to providing Soup Sisters with the means to provide our soups to your local Food Bank, emergency shelters and youth in transition. It's as simple as money in soup out and we'll keep the soup flowing. Please note soup is not shipped to you but is distributed through local partner agencies. To watch a video about MISO, click here.
- Purchase a Truckload A truckload of soup will provide 2 huge kettles of soup- 4,800 servings of fresh and delicious soup to 600 families and 2400 individuals. Buy a truckload and be a Souper Hero! 1 truckload ($24,000.00)
- Purchase a Kettle Just one kettle of soup will provide 2400 servings of fresh and delicious soup to soup to 600 families and 2400 individuals. Buy a kettle and be a Souper Star! 1 kettle ($12,000.00)
- Purchase a Potful Buy a pot full of soup, various sizes available. 5-15-25 litre pots of soup Options: 5 Litre pot ($50 Cdn); 15 Litre pot ($150 Cdn.); or 25 Litre pot ($250 Cdn.)
If you would like to purchase soup as a gift to someone, or in honour of someone please Click here to provide us with information to send them a card acknowledging your souper special gift.
The ultimate teambuilding event is a 'Souped up' one!
Our events offer fantastic kitchen camaraderie, significant volunteer happiness and hands-on togetherness! The evening (or afternoon) will commence with wine, appetizers, and welcome from Soup Sisters. In keeping with our mandate of awareness and education a guest-speaker will also address your group regarding the issues surrounding family violence or youth homelessness. Once the soups are simmering, participants will be offered a simple and delicious meal of soup, salad, fresh bread, and wine to compliment.
At this time added 'Souped Up' events take place in Calgary only where we are consistently booking a minimum of one year in advance.To register your organization for up to a maximum of 40 people for a 'Souped-Up' event please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org