Waltham soup kitchen, food pantry needs to find new location in next six weeks

WALTHAM, Mass. — The Middlesex Human Service Agency is scrambling to find a new location for its Bristol Lodge food pantry and soup kitchen after being told it needed to vacate the building by Oct. 15.

The facility at 545 Moody St. feeds around 40 people Mondays through Fridays and helps another 100 families with its food pantry services Wednesday mornings.

“We see is an awful lot of families coming in, a lot of young moms trying to make ends meet,” said MHSA CEO Bob Mills. “It’s not always the same hundred people. It turns over sometimes. It is a tremendous resource so it’s very important that we find a new home to keep helping folks.”

The owners of Immanuel United Methodist Church informed Mills last month the building would be renovated and the non-profit needed to relocate. Mills is searching for a new spot close to the Moody St. location withing walking distance from public transportation.

“Best case scenario we find a partner with a space similar in size that we can run our programs out of,” Mills said. “The hot meals are the challenge every day. If we don’t find a location by mid-October there’s a chance we may need to pause that service. "

Mills said Waltham city officials don’t have any solutions.

“The city has been tremendous partners with us over the years. We work together in a lot of different ways. Unfortunately, they just don’t have any available buildings at the moment that would be able to be used for this,” Mills said.

Kitchen manager Brian Johnson said he serves food to people who come from as far away as Newton and Watertown.

“Everybody knows this place,” Johnson said. “That’s the only reason why it hurts to lose it.”

Mills said the final day of food service at 545 Moody St. is Oct. 13.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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