In Trail, B.C., The Salvation Army’s hot meal program, formerly Kate’s Kitchen, has recently relocated to a new space, now operating out of the same building as other Army services, including the thrift store and food bank. Renamed “Sally’s Place,” it officially opened in March and represents a new era for the program, according to Captain Rachael Olson, corps officer. 

Kate’s Kitchen first launched in 1994 and offered soups, sandwiches, coffee and desserts to people in the community, while serving as a pickup point for the food bank. For many years, the program operated out of a 1906 building in need of upgrades. Now located downtown, Sally’s Place is a bright café environment with a welcoming dining space and industrial kitchen. 

“It’s beautiful,” says Captain Olson. “We needed to get all our services into one building. Our food bank is now in our basement. The thrift store is part of the main floor with Sally’s Place café on the other side. Upstairs, there is a sorting room for the thrift store as well as administrative offices.” 

The transition has created positive change in the team at The Salvation Army in Trail, with new staff and volunteers on board and long-time staff now working together at the same location. “There’s a lot of laughter. Our staff are finally under one roof. Some of our staff have never had the opportunity to work together, and now they’re creating friendships,” says Captain Olson. “It’s really joyful.” 

A woman in an apron standing in front of a table in Sally's Place.

Linda V., a volunteer, welcomes patrons to Sally’s Place

Since opening its doors, Sally’s Place has quickly garnered interest from the community and has become a welcoming space for families, food bank patrons and those seeking a warm meal. In its first week open, it served 250 individuals. According to Captain Olson, Sally’s Place encourages donations, but lets guests decide what they can give, whether it is $2 or $20. 

Like many communities, Trail faces increasing housing and food insecurity, and the Salvation Army support centre is able to meet the unique needs of each individual as they come in the doors. “Whatever they need, whether it is food, thrift store vouchers or to connect with different agencies, we help them,” says Captain Olson. “The Army’s slogan is ‘Giving Hope Today,’ and that’s what we base everything on. We teach our staff about giving hope and dignity. Giving hope, for us, means to be generous—not just in the tangible support we give others, but in the way that we treat each person.” 

A zoomed out image of the inside of Sally's Place. All the tables are lined up, and it's bright and airy.

Sally’s Place café features a bright, open dining space and an industrial kitchen 

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