Executive Summary

Pasco SOUP is a micro-financing initiative based in Pasco, Washington.  The program is under the Downtown Pasco Development Authority (DPDA). The purpose of the initiative is to raise awareness and provide tangible support to good, community-based solutions in the Pasco community.  With a community as diverse and fast-growing as Pasco, creative community solutions come in many different shapes and flavors.  Although we place no hard boundaries around what solutions might be out there, Pasco SOUP focuses on supporting these five areas:

  • Social Nonprofits
  • Small Business Startups
  • Youth Entrepreneurship
  • Art Projects
  • Community Volunteer Projects / Solutions

This model is based upon a similar initiative started in Detroit, Michigan in 2010 called Detroit SOUP.

Watch Detroit SOUP in Action!

How it Works

  • Audience members pay a $5 entry contribution at the door of Pasco SOUP.
  • The dinners are usually a light, consisting of soup and bread. Local sponsors may contribute food and refreshments.
  • Three to four pre-selected proposals working on projects that benefit Pasco (anything from filling a pothole to starting a business) make a 4-minute presentation.
  • After each presentation, we’ll schedule time for Q&A with the audience.
  • Over a soup dinner, attendees cast their vote for the project they want to help fund.
  • The project with the most votes goes home with all of the money raised from the evening.
  • Winners come back to a future Pasco SOUP event to tell the audience how their project went, how they used the money and what impact the project had on the community.

To keep art and creativity active in the dinners, local artists are invited to share their work while people enjoy their dinner.

Our Rules

Pasco SOUP has only two rules:

  • Projects must benefit the City and People of Pasco.
  • Presenters can’t use technology in their presentations. (Powerpoint, etc.)

We try to be flexible and try new things, even if that means we make (and learn from) mistakes along the way.  Pasco SOUP is fun, creative and an unusual way for people to engage with others in the community.  We try not to overthink it.

Goals and values

The goal of Pasco SOUP is to offer safe spaces for people to gather and share a meal.  Pasco SOUP strives to encourage conversation, relationship building and resource sharing while supporting creative community projects in Pasco.  We value democracy, community, collaboration, creativity and action.


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