Volunteers at the Rainbow Kitchen chop bananas and watermelon.

Volunteers at the Rainbow Kitchen chop bananas and watermelon.

Rainbow Kitchen to receive major facelift

A local kitchen that provides meals to low-income seniors, single parents and street youth is receiving a much-need renovation.

A local kitchen that provides meals to low-income seniors, single parents and street youth will be receiving a much-need renovation next year.

The Rainbow Kitchen has been selected by HeroWork, a community infrastructure renewal movement, to complete roughly $300,000 to $500,000 in renovations in 2016.

Renovations will include replacing the windows, flooring, doubling its electrical service, reconfiguring the kitchen and bathroom and potentially adding a walk-in freezer.

Paul Latour, founder and executive director of HeroWork, said the renovations will make the building more sustainable, lower the cost of the operation of the facility by cutting its electrical bill in half, and improve the workflow of the building so its more efficient and safer for volunteers.

“All of the thousands of people who come there will get really a lift up in spirits because the place will be beautiful and they’ll know that their local community came together to make it happen,” Latour said.

The kitchen serves 36,000 meals a year to the poor and disenfranchised through their community kitchen at the Esquimalt United Church.

“We were ecstatic. It’s kind of like winning the lottery or finding out you received a major grant,” said Jeffrey Dubney, vice president of the Rainbow Kitchen Society. “We feel very fortunate that HeroWork has chosen us and that they’re stepping up to the plate to help us with this major renovation and restoration of the facility.”

Roughly 20 other non-profit organizations who use the building such as Girl Guides, a rowing club and Alcoholics Anonymous will benefit from the renovations as well.

Renovations will begin in late summer early fall in 2016 and will take place over several weekends.

HeroWork’s last project was the renovation of the Citizens Counselling in Victoria which receive more than $150,000 in improvements to the 3,000-square foot building.

HeroWork Program Society is a non-profit organization that helps provide upgrades to local charities. It is their fourth renovation project in four years.