I volunteer at Food and Friends most Thursdays. I've been doing it for about 12 years. Here's the more on Food and Freinds:
Founded in 1988, Food & Friends began in the basement of the Westminster Presbyterian Church with 20 volunteers enlisted to deliver 15 meals/day serving a total of 1,800 meals to 60 clients. Since our inception, we have moved from the cramped church basement to our own state-of-the-art kitchen and pantry facility and initiated new programs to meet the changing needs of people living with HIV/AIDS, cancer and other life-challenging illnesses in the Washington, DC metropolitan community.
The mission of Food & Friends is to foster a community caring for men, women, and children living with HIV/AIDS, cancer, and other life-challenging illnesses by preparing and delivering specialized meals and groceries in conjunction with nutrition counseling.
Food & Friends Values
Accountability: At every level of our organization we are accountable to our clients, donors, volunteers, staff and the public - with unwavering integrity of program services and financial standards.
Community: Partnerships and collaborations are vital to our success, both inside and outside the organization, as we build communities that invest in the welfare of others.
Compassion: With hearts open to the needs of all, we believe friendship, empathy and kindness are as much a part of the sustenance we provide as the meals we prepare.
Dignity: Through confidentiality, respect, and a commitment to quality of life for all, we recognize the dignity of every client, volunteer, donor, staff member, and guest.
Diversity: The caring, loving, fun and dynamic nature of our organization is made possible by the diversity of the people we serve and those who help us serve.
Excellence: At every level of operation and public engagement - from food planning and preparation to nutrition education and workshops, from volunteer coordination to special events - we are committed to the highest standards of quality and excellence.
Reliability: As safety, trustworthiness and dependability in all aspects of our operations are the cornerstones of our services, our clients, volunteers, staff and guests can rely on us to fulfill our mission without fail every day.
Since I've been unemployed this past few months I've volunteered on Tuesday afternoons. This past Tuesday it was all hands on deck as they prepared for Thanksgiving. Somewhere in the area of 650 turkeys were cooked or being cooked when I arrived.
My job was to get the turkeys ready to be packed up for clients. I had to remove the pop up timer. Then the plastic piece that holds the legs together. Next I picked the turkey up and let the extra juice run out of it. Once that was done, I moved the turkey on to another tray. I did close to 100 turkeys in the two hours I was there. It was frenetic atmosphere to say the least.
I hope I contributed just a little to those who aren't doing well so they could have a happy Thanksgiving.