A little soup goes a long way.

Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families, celebrating its 40th anniversary of work bettering the lives of Arkansans, is warming up for its annual Soup Sunday fundraiser. The cozy event offers a variety of savory flavors to spice up a winter’s day while supporting the analysis and research that back AACF’s various efforts.

Dr. Aaron Strong, AACF board member and pediatrician at the Little Rock Pediatric Clinic, is the honorary chair of this year’s Soup Sunday, and knows all too well how important the popular event is to the AACF mission.

“Most of the grants that fund their staff’s policy work can’t be used for the time they spend at important committee meetings at the Capitol and in educating policymakers about laws that impact kids,” Strong says. “Soup Sunday ensures AACF staff can take their research and recommendations all the way to the Capitol.”

Among many victories, the efforts of AACF have led to an overhaul of the state’s juvenile justice system, seen a drop in the rate of uninsured children from 21 percent to a historic low of 4.9 percent and affected tax exemptions for low income families.

“One of the most important things they do is to ensure that our government can afford to make these public investments that help kids succeed,” Strong says. “Kids don’t vote, so AACF is the voice for children at the Capitol.”

But the work of AACF is never complete, and like most good works, it takes money to make things happen. That’s where Soup Sunday comes in with dishes from some of Arkansas’ best restaurants, including this year’s featured chef Capi Peck of Trio’s. The Wally Allen Ballroom of the Statehouse Convention Center will bubble over with broth and leave attendees with some difficult choices when it comes to finding a favorite soup.

“I love the chicken and hearts of palm soup at Cafe Bossa Nova,” Strong says, “but I also have to call out the tomato soup that Dave’s Place, the longest running Soup Sunday restaurant, brings each year to the event.”

Soup Sunday is set for Jan. 28 at the Statehouse Convention Center's Wally Allen Ballroom.
TICKETS + INFO: ARAdvocates.org/Events