Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Shine Your Light Wednesdays: All Souls Friday Soup Kitchen

A couple of years ago, we were blessed to volunteer with the All Souls Friday Soup Kitchen in the heart of the Upper East Side in Manhattan.  
We spent one Friday afternoon there, and the people we met really spoke to our hearts.  The soup kitchen was slightly different than your usual soup kitchen.  It was a serving atmosphere, meaning we helped to set up the dining room, and then we helped to serve the guests who came to have dinner. 
Most of these guests were people who had fallen on hard times or people who couldn't cook for themselves, people with various disabilities; many just needed a helping hand.

The Friday Soup Kitchen operates on a weekly basis, and they need about 25 volunteers to help feed and serve around 160 people.  You can help prepare food, set up, serve the guests, take down and clean up, etc.  I was fortunate to help serve a table of blind men, who were really very sweet; I am so happy I was able to serve these guys; they were so grateful and a lot of fun to serve, as well. 
Dan was able to serve these two women, who he enjoyed getting to know very much. 

Even Jacob was able to help out.
We met other guests and volunteers.
They had also hired two of the usual guests to play the piano and accordion while dinner was being served, which was wonderful.
It was a very inviting, relaxing atmosphere for these people who just needed a bit of hope.  As a volunteer, it was far from relaxing; they kept us hoppin', but I wouldn't trade this experience for the world.

If you would be interested in volunteering with All Souls Friday Soup Kitchen, you can contact Ashley Garrett at (212) 628-8815 or You can volunteer once or as many times as you like. 


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