Odessa Non-Profit In Danger of Shutting Down For Good

Odessa Non-Profit In Danger of Shutting Down For Good

By Geena Martinez
NewsWest 9

ODESSA - A local soup kitchen is in danger of shutting down because there's just not enough money.

Jesus House has been around for years helping those down on their luck to get back on their feet, but with little money, they're now asking the people they serve for donations.

They worry they might not even make it until the end of the month.

Every day, volunteers at Jesus House in Odessa put on their aprons, cook meals and serve them with a smile to those who need it most.

"We fed over 8,000 lunches since January of this year up to August 31st," Donny Kyker, pastor for Jesus House, said. "We give them a church service each day and we actually pray with these people."

But the pots and pans may have to be put away for good because this time Jesus House is the one needing help.

"We're basically going broke," Kyker said. "Our soup kitchen, without any funds coming in, will shut down in about two weeks."

The non-profit used to serve three meals a day but now they can only afford to serve lunch.

"We've actually cut back on some of our serving sizes to help out in that area," Kyker said.

As many as 100 people a day come through their doors but the number always fluctuates.

They also help the homeless, elderly and working families to get back on their feet.

"They either pay the rent or they have groceries, not both," volunteer, Lori Norris said. "So we take bags of groceries, make sure they have their medications. We do what we can to help."

We're told donations come in from time to time but volunteers worry if they can't find a monthly donor, their mission might stop.

"This is helping people who desperately need it, who are not faking it, who are not trying to ride the system," Norris said. "They just don't have it and they need help."

Freddy Jacquez used to be in those shoes.

"I know how it feels," Jacquez said. "I was homeless for three years. Some people look down on homeless people but we're human too."

He now gives his time at Jesus House and said the impact of closing would be devastating.

Still, volunteers are staying optimistic for a better outcome.

"The Permian Basin is amazing," Kyker said. "Anytime of crisis, our community has stepped up and I know they will."

If you'd like to give money to Jesus House, it is tax exempt. You can mail a donation or call 432-272-3362.