BONITA SPRINGS, Fla -- The Bonita Springs City Council holds off on a vote that would allow a soup kitchen to permanently set up in the community.
Cafe of Life is a non-profit that serves daily lunches to those in need.
Bruce Wheatley, Vice Chairman of Cafe of Life Board of Directors says, "these people are nice people, they're law abiding citizens. They are caught up in a very bad economic situation."
Over the past seven years, Cafe of Life has looked at 18 different spots for his soup kitchen and community park.
"I think people are sensitive to wanting to help until they find out it might be close to where you live and then that changes everything," Wheatley said.
Wheatley has currently set his sights on a permanent spot along Nomad Drive and this time around, the reaction from the community is no different.
Brad Wilkening says, "I think the soup kitchen is a great idea, people need it, but on the same hand, would you want it in your neighborhood?"
Maria Hernandez is doesn't want the soup kitchen in her neighborhood because she says, "it's a lot of people coming in from different neighborhoods and I don't think it's going to be secure for our kids."
It's those fears that prompted the Bonita Springs City Council to hold off on a vote.
Mayor Ben Nelson says, "it's a hard decision for council to make. When you have people come forward and they're afraid of something the easiest thing for you to say is okay we won't."
Wheatley says Cafe of Life will endure all the costs for the $500,000 project. The land will be donated by Lee County and all maintenance will be taken care of by Cafe of Life.
It will be up to Wheatley and Cafe of Life to get at least 60 percent of the community on board before they go back to the city council for approval.
In order to get that approval, Wheatley says they plan to educate citizens about the soup kitchen.