Cathy Gouk was pleasantly surprised when she was given a cheque on Thursday to help cover the costs of an annual Christmas dinner she hosts for free at her Sooke restaurant.
Gouk, the owner of Cathy’s Corner, was given $1,000 to help fund a community lunch she’s run for the past nine years that includes a free turkey lunch, complete with cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes and gravy stuffing and a side of veggies.
Last year, the restaurant staff served around 450 people.
But heading into the holiday season, Gouk wasn’t sure whether her team of three would be able to set aside enough dough to serve those meals.
“The girls were saving their tips so we could buy enough turkeys,” Gouk said. “That’s when word got out that we needed help, and then this happens. We’re so touched that the community cares.”
The group behind the act of kindness is the Victoria Truth Centre, a non-denominational church that saw a need and found the funds.
“We always come here to eat, and Cathy really deserves this,” said Linda Cain, a church board member and Sooke resident. “Everyone knows Cathy, and word of mouth spreads quick. We knew we had to help somehow.”
Cain said the group has been looking for restaurants or organizations that deal with food to donate money. She said the decision to help Gouk was an easy choice that the board approved quickly.
“It feels good to be little elves,” said Cain. “It’s a lot of fun.”
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