When Lori Combs purchased the building on Northeast 36th and Kelley, her intent was to move her law practice here. But she soon realized there was a greater purpose for this location.
“We help our community members with the basic necessities of life”, said Combs.
Almost eight years ago Attorney Lori Combs started helping people in the northeast community with free meals.
“Monday thru Friday we have free breakfast, lunch, and dinner, on Saturday we have a lunch and on Sunday we have a Sunday family meal,” said Combs.
Initially there was a cost for the meals.
“She saw someone eating out of the trash and she said she couldn’t let people go hungry, and she started feeding breakfast, lunch, and dinner,” said Arnita Golden, one of the volunteers at the community and cultural center.
Combs, however, knew her community needed more than free food.
“We tutor, we have a mentoring program we’re getting ready to open our community clothes closet, where we will have men, women, boys and girls clothing,” said Combs
There’s also a community garden with no cost for any of the services provided.
“All of this, Lori does it by herself and out of her pocket,” said Eunice Dawson, a former volunteer who now takes advantage of the free food.
No corporate partners or sponsors here, it’s all funded by Combs and people who want to donate.
“God supplies us with what we need and more so that we can share with others,” said Combs.
Combs understands the value of a place like this for her community.
“A lot of times people come here not just to eat or get clothing, sometimes they just want to talk, they just want a hug, they just want somebody to share things with, somebody to pay attention to them. And we provide that. Love is free so we have plenty of that,” said Combs.