The year was 1988. 20 volunteers were working in the cramped Westminster Presbyterian Church to deliver 15 meals per day serving a total of 1,800 meals to 60 clients. 2016: Food and Friends has continued serving people living with HIV/AIDS, cancer, and other life-challenging illnesses in the Washington, DC metropolitan area, while continuing to grow far beyond a church basement.
Today, Food and Friends has 51 staff members while also receiving the support from more than 10,000 volunteers each year. Over the last three years we’ve attended several events that help support the organization, and recently we finally had the chance to volunteer at their main office on Riggs Road, NE in Washington, DC.
Saturday volunteer hours are 9-12 and include anyone from new to experienced volunteers, religious groups, to other organizations. While we were volunteering in the soup packaging area, there were at least 30 other local residents assisting with preparations before the volunteer drivers came by to deliver the meals.
What is incredible is the sheer volume of meals prepared and delivered daily – roughly 1,000. Not only that, but 9 different diets are prepared (gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian, etc) and package with special labels and instructions. Additionally, the menu changes so frequently that those receiving rarely eat the same thing twice.
Often, we get so caught up in the act of living, we forget what we should live for. Serving others, helping those in need, and strengthening every fiber of the fabric of this great city. It doesn’t take a huge act to make a huge impact – don’t think about supporting or volunteering for an organization, just do it.
Want to help Food and Friends? Visit their website and check out all that you can do to show your support.