The Outreach SLG has been talking for a few months about ways to serve our guests better. You may not know that most Saturdays for the past eight months the Cupboard has been serving hot breakfast to our guests. Volunteer groups provide the food and prepare it all in our kitchen for the guests to enjoy before we start distributing food items and clothing. This has been a great new ministry for our Cupboard.
During this time, there have been major shortages in the food available for distribution due to grant funding being cut and Philabundance not having a supply of food to share. We have noticed than many of the guests have not been very upset by the weeks that we couldn’t offer food or when we have had to offer less. After speaking with guests, we’ve found that the main draw to our services is the hot breakfast and clothing. Our guests have nowhere to get a breakfast on Saturday morning. The five food items that have been offered to each guest from the Cupboard are not sustaining them for longer than a day or they are trading the items to other people on the street for other things they might want. Therefore, the Outreach SLG is discussing eliminating the canned food part of the Cupboard and becoming a more functional Saturday breakfast program that also offers clothes and toiletries. This discussion is our effort to meet the needs of our guests rather than continue with a ministry component that is no longer beneficial.
If we were to change the program, we would still have the benefit of ordering food from Philabundance to provide breakfast meals. The Cupboard will still be able to use the money donated and raised through the Walk Against Hunger to provide breakfast. We will not be losing any of the current benefits to being a food program.
We invite you to join us at our next meeting to discuss this possible change in programming. Look for meeting information soon!