Carroll County Times
Carroll County

The Stone Soup Foundation to hold fundraiser to help get bus on the road

Terry Pitt is within reach of accomplishing her goal: Raise enough money to complete her mobile meal bus created to feed those in need in Carroll County.

"We're 85 percent there but I still need more funding to finalize it," she said.


Pitt is the founder and executive director of The Stone Soup Foundation, a nonprofit aimed at feeding the homeless by using a re-purposed school bus as a mobile kitchen. In an effort to raise the needed funds to finish the bus, the organization is holding a "Let's Get This Bus on the Road" event Saturday in New Windsor.

Visitors of all ages will be given free stone soup, a hot beverage and a tour of the bus as they browse thousands of books that are on sale for 25 cents.


"Just come see what we're all about," Pitt said.

The event will also feature cookbooks filled with recipes submitted by local residents on sale for $15 and pies made by Pitt for sale.

The organization receives donated books and earns money for the nonprofit by selling them on in the name of the foundation. Saturday's event is a way for her to sell them to people in-person, giving Carroll County residents a chance to interact with the nonprofit.

The organization started in December 2010 and raised about $17,000 in net income in each 2011 and 2012. That money has gone toward the purchase of the bus, "Big Red," at about $2,700 and feeding those in need.

Most of the items on the bus have been donated. The $1,500 Pitt hopes to earn will go toward the purchase of a range, clean water tank and a generator, Pitt said.

Chuck Harlow, treasurer of the organization's board of directors, said there are a variety of books for sale at low prices. Schools, libraries and even those going to college have been interested in the nonprofit's inventory.

"If anybody's looking for books that would normally be high in cost, the place to go would be to The Stone Soup Foundation," he said.

People can find cheap books to buy and the purchase will benefit a good cause, Harlow said. Helping the homeless is important to him because he went through foreclosure on his farm several years ago.


"I know that maybe things are different now, but it's still happening to people," he said.

Pitt, a classically trained chef, once passed herself off as a homeless person for a few days, she said. After that experience, she realized the importance of providing those in need with hot, fresh, nutritious meals.

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The Stone Soup Foundation serves foods rich in calcium, Vitamin D, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, riboflavin and iron. Milk, dark leafy greens and quality meats are served whenever possible, according to the nonprofit's website. The foundation prepares meals that are low in fat and sodium, minimizing unhealthy processed foods and focusing on seasonal goods, according to the website.

The organization wants to help homeless people in Westminster and Taneytown using the bus starting in March. The mobile meal service plans to have hot dinners available on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, as well as a boxed lunch on Saturdays. Efforts may eventually expand to other areas in the county, Pitt said.

The organization has partnered with churches to provide meals for those in need and has gone into the Women and Children's shelter to provide elegant meals, she said.

Harlow, who completed a lot of the work retrofitting the bus, said it has taken about eight to nine months to complete most of the work on the mobile kitchen and now he is excited to finish up the job.


After finishing the bus, the organization will receive final inspections from the Carroll County Health Department and receive a vehicle license from the Motor Vehicle Administration.

Harlow said he's happy to help Pitt fulfill her dream of providing the meal service to those in need.

"It won't be much more to get it rolling," he said.