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Getting a Meal from the WARM Center

The WARM Center

The WARM Center is a social service agency located in Westerly that provides a wide range of programs for people in need in southern Rhode Island and southeastern Connecticut.

One of the main features of the Center is Anita’s Kitchen, serving lunch and dinner every day to anyone in need of a hot meal. The Center is a member agency of the Rhode Island Community Food Bank, which is where most of the food comes from.

We recently visited the WARM Center during lunch time and spoke with one of the guests.

Health Crisis

In February, Norman, 63, suffered a heart attack.  He says it came as a surprise, as he isn’t a smoker or a drinker and leads a very active lifestyle.

He is thankful for his Medicaid plan, which covered some of the costs, but his expenses still set him back and he is struggling to recover physically and financially.

“Without my insurance, they probably would have thrown me in the streets,” he says.

A lifetime Westerly resident, Norman has worked as a gymnastics coach for around 40 years. After his heart attack, he works much less and isn’t earning enough to make ends meet.

He lives with a friend, but that’s temporary, and he does yardwork to cover his rent. His daughter helps take care of him.

That’s where the WARM Center comes in, helping with food assistance, clothes, and access to other essential services.

Norman comes for lunch and dinner as often as he can. On the day we visited, he and about thirty other guests were enjoying a hearty lunch of homemade meatloaf, sweet potatoes and peas.

“Thank God for WARM,” he says.