What’s the story behind the name ‘Stone Soup’?

A traveller arrived at a village carrying an empty pot.  The traveller said, “I am making Stone Soup, which tastes wonderful, although it would taste even better if it had a carrot.”  One by one, each villager added different ingredients to the pot, and together they shared delicious Stone Soup.

A community in Whanganui has been sharing Stone Soup together since September 2007.  Stone Soup gatherings are run by community members and groups, including Christian and Maori youth organisation Te Ora Hou – Whanganui.

Usually around 350 people gather at a local park every 8 weeks for hangi, games and music.

“We’re helping to remove barriers, but the skills come from the community,” says Judy Kumeroa of Te Ora Hou.  “That’s the beauty of it – people are stepping up as they recognise they have something to offer.”

Judy mentions a 19-year-old young man who is a “core Stone Soup worker”, volunteering to get up at 4am to prepare the hangi at Te Ora Hou.

The community Stone Soup serves is generally low-income, with associated social issues.  Stone Soup gatherings are gang patch-free and no-alcohol events that have a positive focus on family and community.

Community discussions are held during each Stone Soup gathering.  As a result, the community has started up a shared garden, crafts and walking groups, and an intermediate-age boys’ club.

Stone Soup received funding from The Tindall Foundation through Whanganui Community Foundation, one of our regional Funding Managers.

For more information contact:

Judy Kumeroa, Manager Te Ora Hou (Whanganui)

Email: whanganui@teorahou.org.nz

Website: www.teorahou.org.nz