Margaret made a difference – ‘She didn’t come from this town but she built something for this community’

Margaret Davidson, second from right, set up the Casino Community Kitchen in 2017. Pictured here with volunteers from the Commonwealth Bank in Casino. Photo: Contributed

Margaret Davidson moved to Casino in 2017. Not long after her arrival, she started the Casino Soup Kitchen – its name later changed to Casino Community Kitchen.

The community kitchen has had many homes. First it was situated in Simpson Parade in a St Mark’s Church building. Then at the former Salvos Hall in North Street. Currently, the kitchen operates out of a building on Richmond Street.

Terrell Lohman volunteered as a cook at the kitchen in 2018 and is now president of the Casino Community Kitchen.

“Margaret was an absolute force. Her determination to get the kitchen up and running was phenomenal,” Terrell said.

“She saw the need.

“She didn’t come from this town but she built something for this community.”

Terrell Lohman working in the Casino Community Kitchen with volunteer school students.

Two years ago, Margaret left Casino and returned to Manilla, NSW.

She died on December 31 at Manilla Public Hospital. She was 79.

Margaret’s daughter Trish Whitbread remembered the many trips into the Sydney CBD with her mother.

“The homeless people on the streets moved Mum so much that she always said she would like to help feed the homeless one day,” Trish said.

“These interactions pulled at Mum’s heartstrings, and so the seed was planted.”

Initially, Margaret started the Casino Soup Kitchen with the homeless in mind, and it evolved to a community kitchen where everyone was welcomed no matter their circumstances, Trish said.

“Mum worked tirelessly to establish the kitchen, find the premises, raise public awareness and partnering with Coles Second Bite for food donations.

“There was no barrier too great for Mum.”

Margaret’s efforts to provide a hot meal to those who needed it providing nutrition and company continues.

In an interview with Margaret in 2017 she said: “I like feeding people; I just like putting a smile on people’s faces.”

Thank you Margaret for your legacy in creating a community kitchen for Casino.

Vale Margaret Davidson.
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