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Plan Would Roll Out Soul Food In San Francisco's Tenderloin

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) - Soul food could be rolling, literally and figuratively, through the streets of San Francisco's Tenderloin neighborhood within a matter of weeks, if the man charged with tackling the city's homeless problem has his way.

Bevan Dufty, Director of HOPE (Housing Opportunities, Partnership and Engagement) is advocating for a mobile food program that would simultaneously provide employment opportunities for homeless and bring healthy food to those living on the streets or in supportive housing.

He's dubbed the proposed program "Heavenly Souls," and has suggested that workers could have access to city-owned industrial kitchens, allowing them to prepare and sell lunch and dinner five days per week throughout the Tenderloin.

"In the Tenderloin we're really plagued with the fact that there's just not enough good food. We've got a lot of corner stores, a lot of fast food, not supermarkets," he explained his inspiration for Heavenly Souls. "I think often times we don't come out into the street because it's not safe or not inviting. And we have a strong African American population, both in the (Tenderloin) and Sixth Street and I'd like to build on that and recognize that soul food is something that's really not available in the neighborhood."

KCBS' Tim Ryan Reports:

Dufty would like to see Heavenly Souls launch in the near future, but he acknowledges funding still needs to be ironed out. He is hopeful that the program will receive a federal grant or be sponsored by one of the city's high profile tech companies.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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