Week In Review

WEEK #240

Sep 03, 2018

               This week was somewhat of a rollercoaster. It had it's ups and downs but in the end, we met our goals. Thanks to the love and support from all of you, we were able to feed, clothe and reach out to the lovely people of Philadelphia. Every minute we have a chance to share anything with our friends is a gift. Whether it was good or bad. 
          Tuesday the 28th, started off with a wonderful gift from Emily LaBree, Tom McCourt, Danaka Anderson and a few more anonymous folks. They donated lots of alcohol prep pads, food for our Greater Goods and some more hygiene products. These items are crucial for our friends living rough and/or dealing with substance use disorder. Thank you so much for these wonderful gifts for our friends in need. You are truly angels! Later on that afternoon, we distributed 70 lunches and lots of water to our friends on Somerset st. It was not a good service by any means. Despite having some of our food destroyed and being verbally attacked, we still managed to serve many people in the neighborhood. An incident like this, while not normal, can happen when you are dealing with the general public. There is the good, the bad and sometimes it does get ugly. The only way to overcome hate and ugliness is with love and positivity. 
               Wednesday the 29th, was an early service for us as we ventured into the Badlands. Thank you to Alicia T from The First Stop for helping us distribute this morning. There were 80 lunches distributed along with some Narcan. Thank you to Alicia for demonstrating how to use Evzio. Although it does some with instructions, it's always nice to have a visual to go with it. This morning definitely balanced out yesterday's scene on Somerset. 
                 Thursday the 30th, was an awesome double distribution for Kensington. We started off with 60 servings of cheesy spanish rice with beans, corn and tomatoes. We also served 10 chopped salads, popsicles and lots of water. It was little calmer during the day and everyone was respectful of each other and what we were trying to do. We wish we could say the same about our night time distribution. Thank you to Rachel Gucwa and her awesome crew for preparing 50 sandwiches for our friends in Kensington. Margaux assisted a woman who was completely naked while others took advantage of the food. It was terrible. She tried again outside of Prevention Point but it was recently cleared out by the police. Margaux mentioned this was the worst summer ever. 
                 Friday the 31st, was another rough day during our distribution outside of Prevention Point. Thank you to The First Stop for preparing 100 bagged lunches for our friends. Thank you to Alicia T. for helping us distribute and so much more, especially on this day. Thank you to Prevention Point for providing the water and the space. Trying to stay positive about this situation. 
           Sunday the 2nd, was a full day with Greater Goods and our Sunday dinner service. Thank you everyone who came out to spend some time with us and showing our guests a good time. We served 65 guests today at Greater Goods. Although it was the beginning of the month, we still had a full house. We had some new faces mixed in with our regulars. We had lots of clothing to offer and our light breakfast and coffee. Later on that evening, we served 54 guests and shared 10 to go meals with friends who couldn't join us. Thank you to Food Connect for making this possible. The meal was a hit and everyone couldn't wait to share their appreciation with Meredith and Shannon. 
               Monday the 3rd, was another successful day as we served 54 meals in Rittenhouse. Thank you to everyone who came out to make today possible. We served another 50 bagged lunches in Kensington. Friends were super excited about the fresh fruit. Thank you to Tracy Phillips and NCS for preparing and donating these lunches, week after week. We couldn't do it without you. This week we served 538 beautiful people of Philadelphia! 

WEEK #240

Sep 03, 2018

               This week was somewhat of a rollercoaster. It had it's ups and downs but in the end, we met our goals. Thanks to the love and support from all of you, we were able to feed, clothe and reach out to the lovely people of Philadelphia. Every minute we have a chance to share anything with our friends is a gift. Whether it was good or bad. 
          Tuesday the 28th, started off with a wonderful gift from Emily LaBree, Tom McCourt, Danaka Anderson and a few more anonymous folks. They donated lots of alcohol prep pads, food for our Greater Goods and some more hygiene products. These items are crucial for our friends living rough and/or dealing with substance use disorder. Thank you so much for these wonderful gifts for our friends in need. You are truly angels! Later on that afternoon, we distributed 70 lunches and lots of water to our friends on Somerset st. It was not a good service by any means. Despite having some of our food destroyed and being verbally attacked, we still managed to serve many people in the neighborhood. An incident like this, while not normal, can happen when you are dealing with the general public. There is the good, the bad and sometimes it does get ugly. The only way to overcome hate and ugliness is with love and positivity. 
               Wednesday the 29th, was an early service for us as we ventured into the Badlands. Thank you to Alicia T from The First Stop for helping us distribute this morning. There were 80 lunches distributed along with some Narcan. Thank you to Alicia for demonstrating how to use Evzio. Although it does some with instructions, it's always nice to have a visual to go with it. This morning definitely balanced out yesterday's scene on Somerset. 
                 Thursday the 30th, was an awesome double distribution for Kensington. We started off with 60 servings of cheesy spanish rice with beans, corn and tomatoes. We also served 10 chopped salads, popsicles and lots of water. It was little calmer during the day and everyone was respectful of each other and what we were trying to do. We wish we could say the same about our night time distribution. Thank you to Rachel Gucwa and her awesome crew for preparing 50 sandwiches for our friends in Kensington. Margaux assisted a woman who was completely naked while others took advantage of the food. It was terrible. She tried again outside of Prevention Point but it was recently cleared out by the police. Margaux mentioned this was the worst summer ever. 
                 Friday the 31st, was another rough day during our distribution outside of Prevention Point. Thank you to The First Stop for preparing 100 bagged lunches for our friends. Thank you to Alicia T. for helping us distribute and so much more, especially on this day. Thank you to Prevention Point for providing the water and the space. Trying to stay positive about this situation. 
           Sunday the 2nd, was a full day with Greater Goods and our Sunday dinner service. Thank you everyone who came out to spend some time with us and showing our guests a good time. We served 65 guests today at Greater Goods. Although it was the beginning of the month, we still had a full house. We had some new faces mixed in with our regulars. We had lots of clothing to offer and our light breakfast and coffee. Later on that evening, we served 54 guests and shared 10 to go meals with friends who couldn't join us. Thank you to Food Connect for making this possible. The meal was a hit and everyone couldn't wait to share their appreciation with Meredith and Shannon. 
               Monday the 3rd, was another successful day as we served 54 meals in Rittenhouse. Thank you to everyone who came out to make today possible. We served another 50 bagged lunches in Kensington. Friends were super excited about the fresh fruit. Thank you to Tracy Phillips and NCS for preparing and donating these lunches, week after week. We couldn't do it without you. This week we served 538 beautiful people of Philadelphia! 

WEEK #239

Aug 27, 2018

               We couldn't have made it through another week without our friends and family. Thank you to everyone who contributed, donated and supported us. We appreciate all your love and hard work in the name of Sunday Love. Every sandwich, water bottle, clothing donation and monetary donation means so much to us. Each week we slowly increase our numbers during our outreach distribution and it's all because of you. 
        Tuesday the 21st, started off with an awesome meal consisting of homemade pizzas and chopped salads. We served 87 meals including snacks and water. It was a quick day as everything was gone in a matter of minutes. We caught up with a few friends and got some updates on things we've discussed previously. Thank you to Food Connect for the awesome produce and making our lunch prepartion so much fun!
         Wednesday the 22nd, started off with an early distribution in the hidden pockets of Kensington. Thanks to Alicia for helping to distribute 84 bagged lunches. We were able to spread the love throughout tiny pockets of the neighborhood. As for our lunches, it was a repeat of yesterday lunch since our friends raved about it so much. We shared 60 meals with our friends on Somerset and Allegheny. We saw a lot of new faces as we ventured into unfamiliar territory. We shared some resources and words of encouragement along with our meals. It doesn't get easier to meet new people in this position but it is an amazing feeling to remind someone that they are loved and important. 
           Thursday the 23rd, was definitely a group effort as Georgia Morris, Ava Iezzi, Marina Morris and Lori Kushner prepared pb&j sandwiches, mixed friont and pj&j jars! Along with their sandwiches, we recieved 50 more sandwiches from Rachel Gucwa and her awesome crew for their weekly contribution. Altogether we distributed 140 meals that day with lots of water! 
        Friday the 24th, was our double distribution day and we were more than prepared. We started off with sharing 90 meals with our friends on Somerset and 100 more lunches outside of Prevention Point. Although today was a rather rough day, we still managed to distribute neccessary meals to those in need. This summer has been really hard with a mixture of the dangers of substance abuse, lack of resources and the weather, it has been a hard summer to bare. 
          Sunday the 26th, was indeed a record breaking day. During our Greater Goods service, we assisted 80 guests with pantry items, clothing and our breakfast nook. Thank you to The Bagel Place for always thinking of us and our friends. We were joined by an amazing group from Americorp for the day and didn't hesistate to jump right in with the rest of us. Although we were expecting a larger attendance for Greater Goods, we didn't realize just how big that number would be. Thank you to everyone that contributed to the pantry this week. It was a huge help to so many guests this week. The awesome people from the Americorp group joined us again later on that evening for dinners service. Along with our usual rockstar volunteers, tonight was a beautifully smooth. We shared a meal with 54 guests. Thanks to Food Connect, no one was sent away without food. We helped 9 guests with to go meals and ensured them reserved seats for next weeks' meals. 
        Monday the 27th, was a full service day as we shared meals in Rittenhouse and in Kensington. Thank you to the volunteers who joined us for brunch this week. With all of the love and support from you, we shared 54 meals with our friends in Rittenhouse. We also recieved another 50 bagged lunches from Tracy Phillip and No Copyright Sandwiches for our friends in Kensington. This brings us to a total of 728 meals for the week! Thank you for helping us reach such a big number! 


                                              

WEEK #239

Aug 27, 2018

               We couldn't have made it through another week without our friends and family. Thank you to everyone who contributed, donated and supported us. We appreciate all your love and hard work in the name of Sunday Love. Every sandwich, water bottle, clothing donation and monetary donation means so much to us. Each week we slowly increase our numbers during our outreach distribution and it's all because of you. 
        Tuesday the 21st, started off with an awesome meal consisting of homemade pizzas and chopped salads. We served 87 meals including snacks and water. It was a quick day as everything was gone in a matter of minutes. We caught up with a few friends and got some updates on things we've discussed previously. Thank you to Food Connect for the awesome produce and making our lunch prepartion so much fun!
         Wednesday the 22nd, started off with an early distribution in the hidden pockets of Kensington. Thanks to Alicia for helping to distribute 84 bagged lunches. We were able to spread the love throughout tiny pockets of the neighborhood. As for our lunches, it was a repeat of yesterday lunch since our friends raved about it so much. We shared 60 meals with our friends on Somerset and Allegheny. We saw a lot of new faces as we ventured into unfamiliar territory. We shared some resources and words of encouragement along with our meals. It doesn't get easier to meet new people in this position but it is an amazing feeling to remind someone that they are loved and important. 
           Thursday the 23rd, was definitely a group effort as Georgia Morris, Ava Iezzi, Marina Morris and Lori Kushner prepared pb&j sandwiches, mixed friont and pj&j jars! Along with their sandwiches, we recieved 50 more sandwiches from Rachel Gucwa and her awesome crew for their weekly contribution. Altogether we distributed 140 meals that day with lots of water! 
        Friday the 24th, was our double distribution day and we were more than prepared. We started off with sharing 90 meals with our friends on Somerset and 100 more lunches outside of Prevention Point. Although today was a rather rough day, we still managed to distribute neccessary meals to those in need. This summer has been really hard with a mixture of the dangers of substance abuse, lack of resources and the weather, it has been a hard summer to bare. 
          Sunday the 26th, was indeed a record breaking day. During our Greater Goods service, we assisted 80 guests with pantry items, clothing and our breakfast nook. Thank you to The Bagel Place for always thinking of us and our friends. We were joined by an amazing group from Americorp for the day and didn't hesistate to jump right in with the rest of us. Although we were expecting a larger attendance for Greater Goods, we didn't realize just how big that number would be. Thank you to everyone that contributed to the pantry this week. It was a huge help to so many guests this week. The awesome people from the Americorp group joined us again later on that evening for dinners service. Along with our usual rockstar volunteers, tonight was a beautifully smooth. We shared a meal with 54 guests. Thanks to Food Connect, no one was sent away without food. We helped 9 guests with to go meals and ensured them reserved seats for next weeks' meals. 
        Monday the 27th, was a full service day as we shared meals in Rittenhouse and in Kensington. Thank you to the volunteers who joined us for brunch this week. With all of the love and support from you, we shared 54 meals with our friends in Rittenhouse. We also recieved another 50 bagged lunches from Tracy Phillip and No Copyright Sandwiches for our friends in Kensington. This brings us to a total of 728 meals for the week! Thank you for helping us reach such a big number! 


                                              

WEEK #238

Aug 20, 2018

     This week we featured lots of fresh produce from Common Market Place, Food Connect and lots of great supporters from the community. We love and appreciate everyone who took the time out to meet with us, distribute with us and continually support us everyday. You help us to reach out to those who need it the most. 
           Tuesday the 14th, was a a great day for Sunday Love as we touched base with a great friend! He was recently hospitalized long term for some serious medical issues. Through this rough time, he took this time to get help with housing, reconnect with his mother in CA and so much more! He was recently approved for housing and is properly medicated. It was amazing to see him! While we were out in Kensington, we served 60 meals with lots of fresh veggies. Thank you Food Connect for the awesome cherry tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers and so much more! We ate our colors today in Kensington and it was a beautiful thing. 
           Wednesday the 15th, started off with an early trip to the hidden spots in Kensington. These are areas that are often neglected since they aren't out in the open. Thanks to Don Warren and Alicia Tiernan for helping to distribute 80 lunches prepped by Margaux. It was a tough service but it was nice to spread some love in such a lonely place. Later on in the afternoon, we served another 60 lunches at our Somerset stop. Thanks again to Food Connect for the gifting us with all of this wonderful product!  
            Thursday the 16th, was exciting day as we made new friends over at the Common Market! The Common Market is a nonprofit regional food distributor whose mission is to connect good food to our local communities. Everything is from sustainable family farms and aim for community and ecological health. We met with some of the great people and introduced their program to us! We even left with some goodies! Thanks to the Philadelphia Charity Group for splitting up the treasures with us! We used these on our lunches for later on in the day! It was great feeling to be in a room full of people with the same mindset and shared the same goals. Thank you to Megan Storm and Jo Lin for setting up some a wonderful meeting! With the awesome surprise donation, we prepared and distributed 50 lunches. Today was the perfect definition of a group effort. Everyone literally came together to make this happen. 
          Friday the 17th, is always a great day for Sunday Love! Its a double distribution day! We started off the day with 60 meals on Somerset st. Thanks to the First Stop, Alicia Tiernan and our friends at Prevention Point, we distributed 100 more lunches and water to our friends at PP! This is always a great time to catch up with friends and a nice way to end our week in Kensington. A great friend was recently approved for housing outside of Kensington. That made the day extra special along with a few other special people. 
          Saturday the 18th, was a wonderful addition to our weekly lunches! Thanks to Preeti Phillips and her wonderful Sunday School class for preparing 50 bagged lunches for our friend in Kensington. Thank you for helping us reach out to our friends at Prevnetion Point. Our friends were especially excited about the surprise hygiene products in their bag! Thank you for your consideration and all of your hard work. 
            Sunday the 19th, was our first day back to Rittenhouse and we were joined by DBHIDS at our Greater Goods store. Although the weather wasn't ideal and our guests were a little negative, we still managed to help our 62 guests with pantry items, clothing and a light breakfast. Thank you to the Bagel Place, Quaker City Coffee and High Point Cafe  for all the wonderful treats for our friends who use our services. Later on for our dinnner service, it was definitely a busy night.  Thank you to everyone who contributed in anyway to our weekly dinners. A special thank you to our volunteers that evening.  We shared 54 servings of a delicious meal whipped up by Meredith Cleary with the help of Shannon McFarland. Joe DeMaio, Randy Bostick, Barbara O'Shea and Edward McNulty for helping us in the front of the house, serving our guests. Although, we couldn't accomodate everyone, Food Connect had our backs that night. Thanks to the abundance of snap kitchen meals and fresh produce, we helped our 18 friends with to go meals and ensured a seat to sit with us the following week. 
     Monday the 20th, was great end to our weekend in Rittenhouse! We shared 49 meals with friends, thanks to Randy Bostick and Daniel Murnane. Our front of house volunteers were real troopers and worked wonderfully as a team! Each week, our crew never ceases to amaze us. Thank you James McElwain, and Ken Zimbleman for being apart of that awesome team. Later on in the evening, Natalie and Bachich and Margaux distributed 50 bagged lunches outisde of Prevention Point, Somerset st and Frankford bridge. Thank you Natalie for bring some sunshine on an otherwise dark night in Kensington. We appreciate you so much! That brings us to a total of 631 meals for the week! Thank you to everyone who contributed to this weeks' outreach.       
             
    

WEEK #238

Aug 20, 2018

     This week we featured lots of fresh produce from Common Market Place, Food Connect and lots of great supporters from the community. We love and appreciate everyone who took the time out to meet with us, distribute with us and continually support us everyday. You help us to reach out to those who need it the most. 
           Tuesday the 14th, was a a great day for Sunday Love as we touched base with a great friend! He was recently hospitalized long term for some serious medical issues. Through this rough time, he took this time to get help with housing, reconnect with his mother in CA and so much more! He was recently approved for housing and is properly medicated. It was amazing to see him! While we were out in Kensington, we served 60 meals with lots of fresh veggies. Thank you Food Connect for the awesome cherry tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers and so much more! We ate our colors today in Kensington and it was a beautiful thing. 
           Wednesday the 15th, started off with an early trip to the hidden spots in Kensington. These are areas that are often neglected since they aren't out in the open. Thanks to Don Warren and Alicia Tiernan for helping to distribute 80 lunches prepped by Margaux. It was a tough service but it was nice to spread some love in such a lonely place. Later on in the afternoon, we served another 60 lunches at our Somerset stop. Thanks again to Food Connect for the gifting us with all of this wonderful product!  
            Thursday the 16th, was exciting day as we made new friends over at the Common Market! The Common Market is a nonprofit regional food distributor whose mission is to connect good food to our local communities. Everything is from sustainable family farms and aim for community and ecological health. We met with some of the great people and introduced their program to us! We even left with some goodies! Thanks to the Philadelphia Charity Group for splitting up the treasures with us! We used these on our lunches for later on in the day! It was great feeling to be in a room full of people with the same mindset and shared the same goals. Thank you to Megan Storm and Jo Lin for setting up some a wonderful meeting! With the awesome surprise donation, we prepared and distributed 50 lunches. Today was the perfect definition of a group effort. Everyone literally came together to make this happen. 
          Friday the 17th, is always a great day for Sunday Love! Its a double distribution day! We started off the day with 60 meals on Somerset st. Thanks to the First Stop, Alicia Tiernan and our friends at Prevention Point, we distributed 100 more lunches and water to our friends at PP! This is always a great time to catch up with friends and a nice way to end our week in Kensington. A great friend was recently approved for housing outside of Kensington. That made the day extra special along with a few other special people. 
          Saturday the 18th, was a wonderful addition to our weekly lunches! Thanks to Preeti Phillips and her wonderful Sunday School class for preparing 50 bagged lunches for our friend in Kensington. Thank you for helping us reach out to our friends at Prevnetion Point. Our friends were especially excited about the surprise hygiene products in their bag! Thank you for your consideration and all of your hard work. 
            Sunday the 19th, was our first day back to Rittenhouse and we were joined by DBHIDS at our Greater Goods store. Although the weather wasn't ideal and our guests were a little negative, we still managed to help our 62 guests with pantry items, clothing and a light breakfast. Thank you to the Bagel Place, Quaker City Coffee and High Point Cafe  for all the wonderful treats for our friends who use our services. Later on for our dinnner service, it was definitely a busy night.  Thank you to everyone who contributed in anyway to our weekly dinners. A special thank you to our volunteers that evening.  We shared 54 servings of a delicious meal whipped up by Meredith Cleary with the help of Shannon McFarland. Joe DeMaio, Randy Bostick, Barbara O'Shea and Edward McNulty for helping us in the front of the house, serving our guests. Although, we couldn't accomodate everyone, Food Connect had our backs that night. Thanks to the abundance of snap kitchen meals and fresh produce, we helped our 18 friends with to go meals and ensured a seat to sit with us the following week. 
     Monday the 20th, was great end to our weekend in Rittenhouse! We shared 49 meals with friends, thanks to Randy Bostick and Daniel Murnane. Our front of house volunteers were real troopers and worked wonderfully as a team! Each week, our crew never ceases to amaze us. Thank you James McElwain, and Ken Zimbleman for being apart of that awesome team. Later on in the evening, Natalie and Bachich and Margaux distributed 50 bagged lunches outisde of Prevention Point, Somerset st and Frankford bridge. Thank you Natalie for bring some sunshine on an otherwise dark night in Kensington. We appreciate you so much! That brings us to a total of 631 meals for the week! Thank you to everyone who contributed to this weeks' outreach.       
             
    

WEEK #237

Aug 13, 2018

This week was another beautiful week full of love and positivity as we try to combat this harsh weather and rough living. Our friends appreciate all of the love and support that we recieve on a daily basis. We couldn't reach our goals and spread awareness the way we do without you. The amount of love we have for you all is out of this world.
        We started our week off in Kensington with the awesome Kristen Leigh on Tuesday, 7th! We appreciate her company and her bright spirit she lends to Kensington. She prepared 50 lunches which included a sandwich and snacks. Along with the lunches, SLP prepared 50 more sandwiches and water to distribute. Thank you so much to Meghan Wright for the incredible goodies and adding your touch to our daily lunches. Our friends really appreciate the both of you. Later on in the evening, Margaux prepared dinner for 70 for Preventions Point's Ladies night. We couldn't have done it without the help from Tracy Phillips, Jayme Trump and Alicia Tiernan. Thank you Tracy for the incredible desserts. You never cease to amaze us. 
         Wednesday the 8th, was a rather quiet day but we distributed 60 meals with snacks and water. It was a really warm day out and Transit Police were on patrol for anyone "loitering". We had some great interactions with some great people including a young lady that is particularly special to me. We spent some one on one time with her and it was nice to open up with her. She is currently living on the street with her mother and currently battling addiction along with some other obstacles. She is such a beautiful soul, full of potential.  We try to encourage her every time she comes by. We hope one day to see those words stick. 
      Thursday the 9th, was an awesome day as we served 100 meals! Thank you to Rachel Gucwa and her awesome friend for their weekly pb&j contribution to our friends in Kensington! Along with those sandwiches, we served 50 more sandwiches, snacks and lots of water. Thank you to Sara Gomez and our newest friend A who helped us to set up and pass out water. Although at the time, his health was slowly declining, he said that he was working with his case worker was trying to get his health insurance in order. 
          Friday the 10th, started off with an early morning outreach. Alicia Tiernan (The First Stop) and Margaux Murphy distribute 50 lunches, water and socks to the residents of the badlands. Some friends asked for more information on the First Stop. Margaux touched based with some faces with her past and hopefully connected with a long lost friend. Thank you to Sara Gomez and Margot Gearhart with distributing our lunches, snacks and water. We distributed 72 meals during our afternoon distribution. We also distributed out 100 snack packs ourside of Prevention Point. Our awesome friends at The First Stop have been making such a huge impact on their community with these meals. It's beautiful to see this giving cycle! Thank you leveryone for lending us your time, your energy and your love! 
         Sunday the 12th, was a beautiful day in Rittenhouse. We started our day with assisting 56 guests with pantry items, clothing and offerings from our breakfast nook. We had the help of Jeff HOPE students to chat with our guests about improving access to healthcare for the homeless. They really connected with our guests and were the perfect addition to Greater Goods. We look forward to seeing them again in a month! Sunday night's dinner service was super smooth, thanks to our volunteers. We were a little short handed but our guests barely noticed at all. Everyone kicked it into high gear and gave 110%! Thank you to everyone who came out to help with another successful meal. We look forward to having you back every week! We served 54 meals with friends inside and helped friends with to go meals who couldn't join us inside. Thank you everyone who came out to help with another successful meal and those who contributed to make it possible to serve the great food we do every week. 
         Monday the 13th, was a great way to end our weekend in Rittenhouse. Thank you to all the volunteers, kitchen and front of house. We served 53 guests and shared some to go food thank to NCS (No Copyright Sandwiches)! We really turned some frowns upside down with your help with our meals and all of our love! Thank you to all who have contributed this week! Our total for this week has been 708 meals for the week! That is amazing! It's the highest number we have seen in weeks! 

    



     



WEEK #236

Aug 07, 2018

      This week was a great example of friends helping friends. We enjoyed the time we had with our friends preparing and distributing meals, sharing laughs and hugs. Thank you to everyone who took the time to help someone in need this week. Thank you to everyone who donated items, money and time to Sunday Love. 

      Tuesday, the 31st, was another awesome distribution with Kristen Leigh! We shared 100 lunches with our friends on Somerset st. Spending time with Kristen has easily become a highlight of our week. Watching her engage with friends and strike up conversations with those who are a little more reserved. As the summer comes to an end, it's sad to think that this won't be a weekly event. She plans on involving her class at Frankford High in volunteering with Sunday Love. In the past, they have put together fundraisers for us, prepared lunches, made inspirational cards and so much more. We're looking forward to having them back! 

   Wednesday, the 1st, Sunday Love was off to an early start, thanks to Alicia from the First Stop. Margaux and Alicia have been making some connections out in the Badlands and reminding everyone that people still care. Some people out in this section don't recieve a lot, if any, services so, basic nessecities are always appreciated here. They distributed 50 lunches and administered an overdose reversal. During lunch, we had a nice combination of sweet and savory thanks to Rachel Gucwa. Thank you for 50 nutella sandwiches. Our friends were super excited to hear what was on the menu! Along with Rachel's donation, we also served 50 savory sandwiches. We definitely covered all the bases with these. It's always nice to let our vegetarian friends know that we are thinking of them. Later on that evening, Margaux and Brett Verbich distributed 63 sandwiches, assorted snacks and water. Thank you Brett for taking the time to share your story with others. We really appreciate it. 
     
       Thursday, the 2nd, we were joined by Barb Heim and Robert Montgomery! They travelled from New Jersey to join our distribution! They prepared about donated 60 lunches includiung snacks, condiments and water! We prepared 50 quesadillas and brought ice pops to the party. Thank you so much for joining us that afternoon. The distribution was rather chaotic at first so, it was really nice to have to have the extra hands and extra smiles. They left us with lots of bedding for our friends in Rittenhouse. Thank you so much Bob and Barb! Today was a total success and it's all because of you! 

    Friday, the 3rd, once again had lots of great people involved. Thanks to Carol and Ron Ruark and their awesome congregation, we were gifted with 100 pairs of socks! We handed out 70 meals and every pair of socks! Thanks to BOMBA socks for all that they do for the beautiful people in our community and the world! Thanks to Meghan Wright for helping us with awesome ingredients for our lunches and Sara Gomez for helping us distribute everything. Thank you to the First Stop and Alicia for helping up prepare and distribute 100 lunches to our friends at Prevention Point. 

    Sunday, the 5th, brings us to another weekend in Rittenhouse. We started the day off with our Greater Goods store. We assisted 65 guests with groceries, toiletries and clothing. Thank you to The Bagel Place, High Point Cafe and Quaker City Coffee for donating our breakfast and coffee every week. Its a beautiful addition to our  grocery store each week and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. It was a rather hot day outside and guests were becoming rather agitated having to wait in line, in the heat. Our volunteers were very understanding of this factor and adapted accordingly. Thank you to Don Warren, Jennifer Monroe, Jazlyn Eldredge, Mark Robuck and Allison Mungaray. We appreciate your time, energy and hard work.  Sunday night's dinner was a little tense as we had some obstacles throughout the night. A mixture of the heat wave/humidity and other situations our of our control. Our volunteers and guests made the best of the situation. We shared 54 meals with our friends in Rittenhouse. We had new and old friends come out to help and can't wait to come back! Thank you to everyeone who helped make this night a total win! 

    Monday, the 6th, was a beautiful way to end the week in Rittenhouse. We had a delicious brunch whipped up by Daniel Murnane and Randy Bostick. Thank you to the Bagel Place for providing the bagels for our bread baskets. Thank you Jeannie Welsh for sharing your incredible talents with us. Our guests love coming in to your baked goods every week. We share 54 meals with friends in Rittenhouse and they enjoyed every bit of it. It was nice to end our weekend with a calm and cool service. Thank you to the volunteers for all that you do every week for us.

This brings us to 638 meals distributed this week! Thank you to everyone for helping us reach out to our beautiful brothers and sisters in need. We couldn't do this without the love and support from our community! 

 

        
      

    

WEEK #235

Jul 30, 2018

      This week was full of excitement as we were preparing for our fundraiser at Fergie's Pub! It was a wonderful time for friends to come together and raise money for those in need. Thank you to our awesome online community and local businesses for doanting their time and raffle prizes. Thank you to everyone for coming out and having a great time with us! We met a lot of great people throughout the year and it was beautiful having everyone in the same room. 
  Tuesday, the 24th, was another beautiful day spent with Kristen Leigh. Thank you for preparing and helping us distribute 50 lunches to the beautiful people of Kensington. Today's weather was rather inconsistent with lots of humidity and random rainstorms. It was nice to reminisce about our friend C and share some great memories. 
   Wednesday, the 25th, was off to an early start as Margaux and Alicia (The First Stop) served 40 lunches in the Badlands. The Badlands is a new addition to our food service distribution and it is greatly appreciated. Socks were also distributed. Thank you Alicia for helping Sunday Love reach out to those in this area. We appreciate all you do. Later on, Sunday Love served another 90 lunches at Kensington & Somerset. Thank you to Meghan Wright for the delicious cornbread! Reaching out to so many individuals and including a new food distribution location could not have happened with the love and support from all of you!
   Thursday, the 26th, was an extra special day as we had Margot (Anna's daughter) join us for preparing and distributing lunches! We prepared 70 lunches and passed out lots of water. It was awesome to watch our friends interact with her and let her know what a great job she was doing. She proudly distributed the nuts and fruit snack bag that she assembled. Margot gained the attention of a SEPTA transit officer whom donated $5.00 to replenish our water supply! 
    Friday, the 27th, was quite the eventful day! Along with our two food distributions, it was our Food for Friends fundraiser! We started off the day with 55 chorizo and cheesy egg sandwiches and water! It was a little out of the ordinary to head out so early but the love was all the same! Later on, The First Stop and Sunday Love prepared and distributed 100 lunches to our friends at Prevention Point. Thank you to Margaux and Alicia for their hard work and dedication to this service project. Thank you Prevention Point for their water donation and support! Tonight was the night! It was our Food for Friends Fundraiser at Fergie's Pub! It was an awesome night! We raised over $765 dollars! Thank you to everyone who donated a raffle prize, Love City Brewing for donating their awesome Love City lager, Operation In My Backyard for helping out with food and so much more. Thank you Don Warren for everything you did for us including sharing your experience with nonprofits. You really touched the room. Thank you to  Fergie's Pub and the awesome staff for providing the menu and for all of their help with the event. All the left over food from the evening was donated to the First Stop and Prevention Point.
      Sunday, the 29th, was a beautiful day in Rittenhouse as we started the day off by assisting 62 guests at our Greater Goods store. Thank you to everyone to who helped to fill our cupboards and clothing racks this week! Our grocery store allows us to reach out to so many friends each week but does require a lot to maintain it. We are always looking for dry goods, shelf stable items, toiletries and so much more. Please refer to our Amazon Wishlist or our Shop & Drop section of our website for more detailed information. Later on that evening, we were joined by the 1P29 youth group! Thank you to Dajah Jones for introducing us and we look forward to having them join us again! They were eager to dive right in and helped to tackle any project we gave them in a matter of minutes! We had kids ranging from 6 to 21 and everyone gave 110%! Thank you so much for spending time with us! We shared 54 meals that evening and even met some new friends. Thank you to everyone for coming together to creat another beautiful meal for our guests!
      Monday, the 30th, was a great brunch service, thanks to everyone involved! Thank you to Jeannie Welsh for adding her homemade baked goods to our meal! It has become such a wonderful addition and a nice little surprise for everyone each week. We shared 55 meals at brunch and 50 lunches in Kensington! Thank you No Copyright Sandwiches for the sandwiches and homemade goodies! You truly make Monday's magical. 
   This week we served 564 meals! Thank you to everyone who contributed to our daily lunches and sharing our stories. Each week is made possible by the incredible people in our community. Thank you for all of you encouraging words and endless support. 

                 
       
          
   

Week #234

Jul 23, 2018

This week was a hard one for us and our friends in Kensington as we all lost a really good friend. Thank you to everyone who took the time to reach out to send us your condolensces. It's a beautiful thing to have friends and family around you when life gets rough. To those who knew C, we all know how sweet and kind he was. Despite life having put him through the ringer, he tried to make the best of what he had. Always with a smile on his face. We appreciate the time we had with him, even the ugly times. The pain for him has ceased and that is something to take comfort in. 
   Our awesome friend Kristen Leigh joined us for distribution after preparing 50 lunches for our friends in Kensington on Tuesday, the 17th. Thank you Kristen for always making time for our friends in need. I really enjoy my time with her and the conversations we've had. Kristen met C during her first distribution with us. As always, he was a gentleman to anyone we introduced to him, even on a bad day. I'm glad my two favorite people got to meet before C passed on. Thank you Kristen for sharing those memories with us. We'll never forget it. 
    Thursday, the 19th, we distributed 105 meals and lots of water! Thanks to Meghan Wright for literally making the best tuna salad sandwiches. I am convinced she can sneak any vegetable in her tuna sandwiches. This week was purple cabbage! Our friends were so excited about eating their colors! Thanks to Rachel Gucwa and her awesome crew, we helped out some of our vegetarian friends with her PB&Js. It was nice to share a couple of smiles and think about happier things, if only for a moment.
     Friday, the 20th, was bittersweet. Thanks to love and support from our community, in real life and online, we shared 160 more meals with friends. Alicia and Margaux set out for the third week to distribute lunches prepared by the members of First Stop! This project was made possible by our awesome supporters and friends. Thank you for helping us to continue spreading the love. Somerset was rather crowded and everyone was talking about C. The wonderful staff and friends held a vigil for C next to The Last Stop. It was nice to have his close friends share some nice words about him. One of the things shared was he was close to recieving housing and talking about treatment. He was so close to making it out of Kensington alive. Rest in Peace C. WE LOVE YOU! For the sweet part, thanks to some really encouraging and persistent friends and strong will, our friend Tiffany entered a treatment facility! I met Tiffany for the first time during the Encampment Eviction back in May. She was the last person left and Officers were literally counting down the minutes before they ran her name for warrants. Without any hesistation, a group of us started to help her move her belongings. Everything she owned was thrown carelessly into a trash bag as the time ticked away. After the stress of that morning, Tiffany dissappeared for awhile. She assured us she was okay and that she would be in touch. Fast forward to a couple days later, we caught up with Tiffany. She informs us that later on that day, everything she owns was picked up by sanitation. We thought she would be safe since it was on the block of what was being cleared but we were wrong. It knocked the wind out of me to think this beautiful woman has lost everything she had. It's incredible to think of how far she has come already. What she had to endure to get to this moment. We are beyond proud of her. 
        Sunday, the 22nd, was an awesome day for us in Rittenhouse! We started the day off with assist ing 63 guests with groceries for the week! Our friends  Jennifer, Nicholas and Barb helped us out by donating lots of clothing, wipes and ponchos. The ponchos were a great call since the weather called for rain later on in the evening. Nicholas did a great job managing the toiletry table. He did  everything from setting up and organizing the product to assisting guests and cleaning up. He was truly the superstar of the shift! Sunday night's dinner service was smooth sailing and it was all thanks to our awesome volunteers. We shared 54 sit down meals with some guests and those who couldn't join were given snap meals instead. Thank you to Food Connect for making this a possibility. It's so comforting to let our guests know that if they stop by during our service, they can have a meal. We shared a total of 69 meals in total that evening! Our meal was spectacular, thanks to Meredith Cleary. Our guests were treated with respect and kindness, thanks to our volunteers. We couldn't do what we do without you. 
   Monday, the 23rd, was an interesting day. Although, there were some bumps during our service, the good always outweighs the bad for us. Randy, Daniel and Anna held it down in the kitchen and did a great job! We shared 63 servings of our brunch meal to our 54 guests. Second servings were distributed to those who stayed through the meal. Everyone left with full bellies and big smiles. It doesn't get better than that. 
             This week we served 510 meals! Thank you friends and family for doanting to our brothers and sisters in need. If you are interested in checking out a meal service or donating, feel free to contact us! We look forward to hearing from you. 
        
 

       
     


     

WEEK #233

Jul 16, 2018

Another week has passed where lots of food, water and love were shared with our friends in Kensington and Rittenhouse. Thank you to all of our friends whom have donated, volunteered and shared this week's success with us. We appreciate all of you so much! 
      Tuesday, the 10th, was an awesome day as we shared 150 lunches today with friends in Kensington. We look forward to every Tuesday afternoon with our friend Kristen Leigh. She helps us by prepping 50 lunches and helps up to distribute them in Kensington. Everyone is drawn to Kristen's smile and upbeat energy. While we distributed at Kensington and Somerset, Margaux distributed 100 sandwiches outside of Prevention Point. Water is in great need so we doubled up on water distribution but it never seems like enough. We are grateful for places like The Last Stop for providing water for our friends, everyday all day. 
   Wednesday, the 11th, was made possible by our wonderful friends, Nicole B. , Wes B., and Sara Gomez. We shared 60 lunches with lots of snacks and water. This week's weather has been brutal. The lunches and water were much appreciated and loved by all. We even helped a beautiful pitbull that had been adopted by the neighborhood. He seemed to be in decent health despite being a little malnourished and dehydrated. He had the sweetest face and the neighborhood instantly fell in love with him. He definitely isn't lacking in love.
     Thursday, the 12th, featured some fresh veggies and our awesome weekly sandwiches from Rachel Gucwa and her awesome crew! We helped out 90 friends today and reached out to new friends. We noticed a new group of people located on the corner of Kensington and Allegheny. We introduced ourselves and let them know about our weekly food distributions. They seemed to be really excited about finding food and water in the late afternoon so, we look forward to connecting with them again. 
   Friday, the 13th, was a great way to end our week in Kensington as we got to spend the day with our friend Tim. Tim is an awesome person we met while attending workshops at the Kensington Storefront. He volunteers there and Prevention Point. He is always full of life and cracking jokes even when life gets rough. He helped us pass out 72 meals and lots of water. As we were packing up, we passed by an unconscious gentleman. Tim mentioned that he helped this same guy outside of  Prevention Point last night. A couple minutes later, the same transit police officers that were with Tim that night. Tim is an awesome guy and we're happy to spend any time we can with him. 
     Sunday, the 15th, was another beautiful day in Rittenhouse. We started the day by assisting 53 guests at our Greater Goods store. We also had some folks from St Gabriel's and DBHIDS (behavioral health) join us. They provided referrals for some and managing to perform a couple of screenings. We weren't expecting much interaction between our guests and this new service since it can be a sensitive subject for some. Much to our surprise, our guests were very appreciative of their time and information. We look forward to bringing out more resources every Sunday. As for dinner, even though it didn't go according to plan, it was successful nonetheless. We served 54 guests and helped friends who couldn't join us with snap kitchen meals. Shoutout to all of our friends and volunteers who came out and enjoyed an evening with us.
        Monday, the 16th,  was a pleasant brunch as Daniel Murnane, Randy Bostick and I whipped up a delicious meal for our friends. We served 55 meals during our brunch service and 50 lunches in Kensington. Thanks to No Copyright Sandwiches for your constant support and delicious treats! Thanks to all the help of our awesome friends, family, volunteers and community members, we served 584 meals this week! You are all amazing and thank you for sharing the love! 

    

    
     

WEEK #232

Jul 09, 2018

We hope all of our friends enjoyed their holiday week! This was an exciting one for us. We started collecting prizes for our upcoming fundraiser, made some new connections with some great people and helped so many friends with the love and support from you!
   We started the week off with 3 stops in Kensington today! Thank you so much to Kristen Leigh for your 50 bagged lunches! We appreciate the time you take out of your busy schedule to help us reach out to so many people. You are the definition of a rockstar! While those were being the distributed outside of Prevention Point, we distributed 60 more lunches over at Kensington & Somerset! We ended the night with Ladies night at Prevention Point! Thank you to Meghan Wright and Tracy Phillips for helping out with the meny for that evening! We served 70 meals at Prevention Point, bringing us to a total of 180 meals for Tuesday! We couldn't have done any of this without these three wonderful ladies! Thank you for lending us not only your time but your talents too!
   Wednesday, the 4th, was a light day for Sunday Love. We decided to save some of our resources since we knew a lot of outreach groups were out in Kensington. We made 30 servings of macaroni&cheese and roasted zucchini for our friends over at the First Stop! It's amazing what a warm meal can accomplish!
   Thursday, the 5th, was full of love and donation from our friends in the community! Thank you to everyone who reached out and showered us with love! We appreciate everything you do for us! We started the day off with 60 lunches and lots of water with our friends on Somerset. Margaux dropped off some food, hygiene products and sleeping mats to the awesome members of the First Stop! Thank you Meghan Wright, Nickolette Phillips and Nicole B. for helping to make this possible! The First Stop and SLP are so lucky to have friends like you! We also recieved a huge donation from our friends at OCCUPYICEPHL! They supplied us with lots of water, granola, buts and even some sweets! Thank you so much to David Haub and friends for thinking of us and helping us to reach out to so many people! 
   Friday, the 6th, SLP and First Stop are joining forces every Friday to prepare and distribute 100 bagged lunches to our friends at Prevention Point. This week was our first week implementing that and it was a huge success. Thank you to the friends who have donated and helped to make this new distribution happen! Thank you Megan Storm for helping to facilitate this. Margaux Murphy had the brillian idea for this service project and everyone else helped to make this come true! In addition to our Friday lunches at Prevention Point, we served 60 sandwiches and snacks including cookies baked by the lovely Erica Emmons Alimario and pastries from our awesome friends at Benna's Thank you so much for making our lunches extra special today! With the help of everyone, we distributed 160 meals today in Kensington!
   Saturday, the 7th, was a nice change of pace as we had Miranda Brown drop off 50 bagged lunches! We instantly thought of the First Stop and it couldn't have worked out better! The First Stop was heading out to a rafting trip and still needed lunches for the day. Thanks to Alicia, we were able to coordinate a drop off before everyone left. The lunches included a grilled cheese (still warm), lots of snacks and water! 
   Sunday, the 8th, was a great day as we spent the day in Rittenhouse! Our Greater Goods store was a success once again as we helped out 54 guests with groceries for the week. Margaux was surprised by an old friend and had some homemade cakes dropped off by our friendly neighbpy, Pollianha Zhao. All in all, it was smooth sailing and look forward to incorporating more resources in the near future. Dinner was just as awesome and we shared 54 meals with our friends including homemade cupcakes from the lovely Meredith Cleary! Our volunteers were repeats of last week which explains the smooth service and warm atmosphere! Thank you to Gabe B., Carol and Ron Ruark, Beck D., Randy B., Meredith Cleary, John G., and we added Julie and Phoebe Bush in the mix. 
   Monday, the 9th, was a little light as we didn't reach our capacity for the day. We served 38 meals including homemade sour cream coffee cake from the awesome Jeannie Welsh. For the past couple of weeks, we've incorporated more homemade baked goods into our meals. Our friends have always expressed their love for fresh baked goods and our volunteers have stepped in to take our service to another level. Thank you to Cameron Zuback, Meredith Cleary, John Gardner, Jim McElwain, Randy Bostick, Ben LaRiccia and Tracy Phillips for helping us start the week off right! Thank you to No Copyright Sandwiches for their weekly 50 bagged lunches for Kensington! We had an abundance of fresh fruit to distribute with the lunches. Fresh fruit is always an instant favorite! With all the help of our supporters and volunteers, Sunday Love Project distributed 572 meals this week! Thank you to everyone for coming together and helping us to fight against hunger! 


























   

WEEK #231

Jul 02, 2018

Friends and Loved Ones of Sunday Love, thank you for helping out and making this week another successful one! This week was rough with the weather and experiencing some losses in Kensington so, any and all support meant so much. During these hard times, it's easy to feel lost and alone. Thank you for constantly reminding us of how much love there is in this world, even when it gets ugly. 
   Tuesday, the 26th, was a great day as Margaux and I partnered up to work our two food services. We started the day off with 72 lunches at Kensington and Somerset. We were joined by an old friend from Rittenhouse. We also had the pleasure of linking up with two wonderful women who are making great strides in Kensington with their own outreach groups. Thank you Ashley Lynn and Roz Pichardo for reminding us that we are not alone and that there is hope. Later on that evening, Margaux and Meghan teamed up to serve 50 more sandwiches at Prevention Point. Although, it did get a little aggressive during the service, some friends stepped up to help control the crowd. They reminded everyone why we were here and that manners are a great way to show gratitude. Thank you Meghan Wright for your constant support and sharing your beautiful talents with us. Food Connect donated a bounty of swiss chard and we were a little puzzled as to how to intergrate it into our lunches. Meghan sauteed the chard and added it to tuna. It was a major hit and we even introduced a new vegetable to some lucky ones! She is a major superstar for helping us accomplish something as awesome as that! 
 Wednesday, the 27th, was another great opportunity for us to divide and conquer. We have to thank Erin O'neill Shine for stepping up and helping us transport food from Chrissy Becker at the Navy Yard. Thank you Chrissy for thinking of us and hooking us up with so much wonderful food! Erin dropped the food off at the First Stop and dropped off cookies for our lunch service and a clothing donation. All errands done with a huge smile on her face. She's definitely one in a million. As for our lunches, we serve 60 sandwiches along with Erin's cookies. Margaux passed through later on that evening with 50 more lunches from Kristen Leigh. Today, we both noticed how quickly the food went. Food seemed to be scarce so far this week. 
  Thursday, the 28th, we were joined by the wonderful Sara Gomez. We served 50 lunches and lots of water. I'm a little biased when it comes to her because she is my mother (Anna B.). It's amazing and almost surreal to see her interact with the people we love and care for each day. It's almost as if two worlds are collided but for the best reason possible. Thank you mom. Margaux also recieved food from Rachel Gucwa and Love City brewing. She made drop offs to Prevention Point and the First Stop. Thank you Rachel for the 50 lunches and Love City for always thinking of us. You helped Sunday Love reach out to so many wonderful people. 
  Friday, the 29th, lunches were prepared and transported by the lovely Meghan Wright. I had the pleasure of meeting her face to face, outside of the Abbaye. She happily made us 50 sandwiches for our friends in Kensington. Margaux and Meghan have known each other for quite some time. Meghan shared the origin of their friendship with me and how it has evolved over time. Never has the love shifted or the dynamic changed. These are some serious friendship goals. 
  Saturday, the 30th, Margaux hooked up the First Stop with 60 sandwiches and tons of fresh baked cookies. If baking in 90+ degree weather doesn't show love and dedication, I don't know what does. The First Stop was having a picnic the next day and were a little worried about the food aspect of it. Margaux came through with the food and the love. What more could you need at a picnic?
 Sunday, the 1st, was not only nice to see our friends, it was nice to have the Gardner's back! Rachel and John Gardner are the pastors of the Church of the Holy Trinity and great friends with Sunday Love. They support us when it comes to every detail and are willing to do anything to help us continue our mission. We couldn't do what we do without them so, it was great to have our friends back from their well deserved family vacation. Thank you to our friends Allison, Jennifer and Mark for helping to make the Greater Goods store as smooth as possible. It was the first of the month so, our turn out was a little light, not to mention it was a scorcher outside. Our 40 guests enjoyed our breakfast nook after shopping and purusing our clothing area. Our Sunday night service was really fun as we showed some new volunteers the ropes and went over points of service.Thank you to Ben and Carol Ruark, Beck D., Jamie Ward, Shannon M. McFarland, Joe DiMaio, Daniel Murnane, Randy Bostick, Edward McNulty, Meredith Cleary and John Gardner.  We served 55 guests today as we are still working out the kinks of some new rules. We made some great friends and left with a full heart! Thank you to Food Connect for helping us to reach out to friends who couldn't join us for dinner that evening. It's a really great feeling to have the ability to send meals to our friends even when we reach out max. 
  Monday, the 2nd, was a little more on the lowkey end as we served 45 meals  that morning. Daniel Murnane, Randy Bostick and I held down the fort in the kitchen as Meredith Cleary took a much needed day off. Our friends up front were organized and eager to help in any way they could. Thank you to Tracy Phillips, Eli Phillips, Henry Bishop, Jeannie Welsh, Elizabeth Strenge, Jack Saint Claire and James McElwain. Jeannie added her own personal touch by baking blueberry corn muffing to go with our entree. We also received 50 lunches from Tracy Phillips and the No Copyright Sandwiches crew. Thank you for bringing the love every Monday. You bring a new meaning to Mondays for us. This brings us to a total of 592 meals for the week! Thank you to everyone for making this possible and believing in our mission of spreading love. 



 
Photo Courtesy of Joe DeMaio



    

   







   

WEEK #230

Jun 25, 2018

  This week SLP had friends join us on our distributions! They had a chance to experience what we do everyday and how much their hard work is appreciated. We tell our volunteers and supporters just how much they mean to us but it's great for them to see it for themselves. It's also a great opportunity for our friends to express their own appreciation for what the SLP family does for them. That connection is priceless. 
   Tuesday, the 19th, we had the pleasure of Kristen Leigh join us for service! Kristen is a teacher at Frankford High School. Recently, her class (Room 335) raised money for the Sunday Love Project by holding a coffeehouse in their school! They've also made us lunches in the past and have continued to support us throughtout the school year! This time Kristen and Sophia teamed up to make 50 lunches for our friends in Kensington. She enjoyed it so much and our friends enjoyed an extra smiley face! Thank you so much Kristen and Sophia for helping us start the week off in style and with a smile! 
   Wednesday, the 20th, was an exciting day! We served 120 lunches with lots of water and aweseome banana bread from Tracy Phillips. Our friends are huge fans of anything Tracy and her crew (No Copyright Sandwiches) bake! It's easy to say they've got it down to a science. It takes their mind off of the brutal weather we have been experiencing lately.  Our friends have little to no protection and little to no shelter from the sun. Please consider donating travel sized sunblock and aloe vera! These will be distributed in our hygiene bags and to our friends we see daily. 
   Thursday, the 21st, we were joined by the awesome Barbara Heim! Barabra provided 60 lunches and joined us for our lunch service! She was so eager and excited to get out there and meet everyone. Thank you to Rachel Gucwa for her 50 lunches that her and her awesome friends make for us weekly! Together we served 110 lunches! It was pleasure to finally meet one of our greatest supporters! She was just as sweet and kind as we imagined! She is always there to shower us with love and encouragement. Thank you for not only what you did this day but what you do for us everyday!
   Friday, the 22nd, we distributed 314 lunches to friends in Kensington! Thank you so much to Allison Hawver McDowell, Don Warren, Sara Gomez, Megan McLaughlin and the SGS company. Today was a huge day for us and we couldn't have done it without everyone listed. Allison helped out with 64 lunches including snacks, fruit and tons of water. With her donation, we helped out the awesome members of the First Stop. These folks are taking the right steps in their recovery and need the support of their community. They were so grateful and even helped us unload the car. Thank you so much Allison! You're a rockstar! We also recieve 250 lunches from the SGS company! This is the 2nd year in a row that Southerin Graphics Systems Inc has included us in their community outreach. Thank you so much to Megan McLaughlin for reaching out and for setting everything up! Thank you to SGS for helping us to reach out to so many people on this day! We distributed 50 lunches outside of Prevention Point and offered 50 more for the drop in center. We also distributed 150 more lunches at Kensington and Allegheny. Thank you so much to Don Warren, for his patience, kindness and positive attitude. He helped us distribute the last 150 lunches and managed to make a 100 people smile in the process. Last but not least, thank you to Sara Gomez for sticking it out with us throughout the entire day. She helped us organize, transport and distribute the meals today. Not only has been such a great support to SLP but to me especially. Thank you for everything.
  On Saturday, Meghan Wright shared some tuna sandwiches and Margaux picked up some pastries and took them over to the First Stop! 
  Sunday, the 24th, was an absolutely amazing day! We started the day off by assisting 56 guests with pantry items and clothing. Our breakfast nook was loved and appreciated by all. We have some true coffee drinkers in our family. Our friends braved the heat and enjoyed a hot cup of coffee. Well deserved. Thank you for Ger Ronan for joining us all the way from MASS, Aino Assmus, Mia Diewald and Jake for helping the guests and make them feel welcomed while they stay with us! Sunday night was just as beautiful! Thank you to Gabe B, Alicia, Chris, Randy Bostick, Meredith Cleary. There's something about this group of volunteers. Everyone just melded together and by the end of the night, we were a well oiled machine. We shared 55 meals with our friends. Despite a little mix up at the door causing us to over seat, everyone worked together to make this a pleasant service. Thank you to Mandy Diesel for the 50 bagged lunches for our friends Kensington. It was an aggressive evening and at one point, Margaux had to put some people in their places. Everyone's safety is a priority over everything. We need to make sure that everyone is being respected and acknowledged. 
  Monday, the 25th, was a great end to our weekend in Rittenhouse and a great way to start our week in Kensington! In Rittenhouse, we shared 61 meals! We had an abundance of food and a little mix up with our hours caused a little bit of an overflow of guests. Luckily, we could accomodate everyone. In the future, we will make sure that our guests are aware all of our services and time they are available. Thank you to Jim McElwain, Ben LaRiccia, Deb, Lily and Ben Cline, Barbara Schultes, Meredith Cleary, Randy Bostick, Tracy Phillips and Dan Murnane for making this a successful service. Tracy Phillips and the No Copyright Sandwiches crew makes 50 lunches for our friends in Kensington each week. She took it upon herself to serve the sandwiches herself outside of Prevention Point. Once a month, she makes dessert for Ladies night at PP so, she was in her comfort zone. Thank you to everyone who made this week possible! We served 760 meals this week!

  

   

WEEK #229

Jun 18, 2018


  This Tuesday, the 12th, was a great way to kick off the week. I was joined by my mother and served 50 meals including some popsicles and water on this hot day. We made some progress with someone special as he opened up to us. It's something we've been working on but he would usually resist our attempts at being friendly. Margaux made a food drop with 50 more meals for Somerset. Thank you so much to our friends who made it possible. Thank you to Nicole B. and Ringo R. for always thingings of Sunday Love! It means so much to us to have friends like you. 
   Wednesday, the 13th, was a super awesome day! Thanks to Benna's, High Point Cafe, Karen Glenn Marano and Rachel Gucwa we served 100 lunches between Somserset and Monmouth st. Margaux was a busy bee (as always). She picked up appliances for the First Stop, that were donated by our awesome friends! Margaux bought lots of pb&j supplies and dropped it off at the Last Stop. She helped a friend get an ID and fed the awesome people of Kensington. Thank you so much Chrissy Becker, Rachel Gucwa, Karen Glenn Marano, Peggy Maxwell-Finley and Danaka Anderson for helping us with your donations. Zach Greer donated some musical instruments to the awesome members of the First Stop. It was loved and appreciated by all including an old friend who hadn't touched a guitar in months. Music is food for the soul. It doesn't have to be a physical need to be vital. Thank you Zach. Mission Music is touching lives everyday and we're happy to be apart of it. 
  Thursday, the 14th, was a little chaotic due to the police investigating the scene of the crime. In the end, everyone involved was okay but it still had the block on edge. We passed out 55 meals to friends as they were passing through. Everyone was on high alert so, no one stuck around for too long. Thank you to Nicole B., Beth Esposito, Sara and Andrew Richman for making today's lunch possible. From Beth's delicious roasted chicken dinner to Nicole's slicing turkey for us week after week to the Richman's donating sweets, everything came together in beautiful way. The love was really pouring out of this one. 
  Friday, the 15th, was a little calmer than the day before. Although not everyone was having a good day, it was nice to catch up with friends. We served 64 meals and talked to a new friend. Earlier that day, all of his belongings were stolen and he was really upset. He usually keeps to himself so, it was a little out of the ordinary to have him share like this. Thanks to a great friend, we helped him out with a duffle bag. I hope he learned that it's okay to ask for help sometimes. It doesn't make you weak, it's make you strong to understand that you can't do it alone. 
  Saturday, the 16th, was an awesome day for SLP as Margaux checked out the service at Liberti Church. Thanks to Benjamin Moore for inviting us and making Margaux feel so welcome. We look forward to collaborating with Liberti in the near future! 
  Sunday, 17th, was bittersweet for all of us. Although, we had the opportunity to share some great moments with some special people, we had to say goodbye to a great friend. Skyla Edwards was a Drexel student that soon became apart of the SLP family. She was a master at chopping veggies, kitchen dj and known for putting Dan and Randy in their places when needed. She always had some great words of encouragement and big smile every Sunday night, Its an honor and a priviledge to be friends with someone like you. We look forward to keeping in touch. Greater Goods was smooth sailing and a great way to start the day. Our breakfast nook was plentiful and our friends appreciated every part of it. Thanks to The Bagel Place and High Point Cafe for the bagels and pastries. Thank you to Quaker City for fulfilling all of our coffee needs every week. We also had our friends at Distributing Dignity dropped by with lots of great items for the ladies at the First Stop. They provided lots of feminine products and bras with information on sizes by the brands. Joanie Balderstone and Rebecca McIntire, thank you for friendship and helping the friends of SLP.  Some women require certain hygiene products but don't have access to enough or any throughout their time of need. DD is helping to close that gap. We have some amazing friends and wouldn't know what we would be without all of you! Meredith Cleary enjoyed a well deserved weekend off as the kitchen was filled with awesome new volunteers! Kiesha and Dajah reached out to us a couple of months back to put together a kitchen takeover. They recruited a great group to come out and help volunteer at Sunday night's dinner service. Kiesha Kearney, Dajah Jones, Joyce Brockington and LaTonya Kearny were the captains and the mvps of the kitchen. We shared 51 meals that night Although the meal service had a couple hiccups (it was a scorcher that day), our friends enjoyed a great meal thanks to these ladies! These ladies were looking to give back and in the process, made some long lasting friendships! Thank you ladies! We look forward to having you back anytime! 
  Monday, the 18th, was a little different as Daniel Murnane and I cooked that morning. We had some beautiful zucchini to incorporate, thanks to Food Connect. We served 43 meals at our Rittenhouse location and served 50 lunches at Somerset, thanks to the Harry Potter Pipers! Our friends look forward to your baked goods every week. You never cease to amaze us with your awesomeness. The lunches were gone in under 15 minutes and the water was definitely necessary. It was definitely another hot and humid day in Philadelphia. After all is said and done, we served about 463 meals this week! We couldn't have done it without our friends, family and awesome volunteers. Thank you for helping to get SLP where it is today and where we want to be. 


  
 



      

WEEK#228

Jun 11, 2018

If you haven't heard yet, Carson Wentz and his AO1 Foundation are running a free food truck this year! It will cater to the food insecure and individuals facing homelessness. It is set to start this August with Lincold Financial Field being their first stop. Now, we aren't looking for a visit from the food truck, our kitchen crew has got it under control. We would love a visit from the man himself, Carson Wentz! We really feel his presence in our warm and inviting atmosphere could have the power to really inspire some people. We have some of the best guests and friends in the world. We remind them daily how special they are and how much we appreciate them. We work hard to maintain a certain standard for our friends while they are with us and want to take it to the next level. We are asking all of our friends and loved ones to tweet/email/call/post about Carson Wentz coming to visit us at The Church of the Holy Trinity. Feel free to add the hashtag #wentzforSLP to any relevant social media posts! If anything, maybe Meredith could show him a thing or two. 
   We had an incredible start to the week! We served 170 meals on Tuesday, the 5th! Thanks to Carrie Holak and the Pennrose Foundation, we distributed 100 lunches at Kensington and Somerset. Pennrose is an awesome company that develops and manages affordable housing. Within the company, they formed two outreach programs to better service their community! Each region holds an event each quarter to make a donate 200 lunches to local shelters and outreach organizations. Thank you so much Carrie for reaching out to us and to the entire Pennrose Reaching Out team for making this possible! You guys are rockstars and thank you for providing stability for our brothers and sisters in need! Later on that even Margaux and Tracy Phillips prepped and served a 3 course meal for 70 at Prevention Point's Ladies Night. Thank you so much Tracy for lending your talents to make this dinner extra special for everyone! You truly are one of a kind! 
 Wednesday, the 6th, was prepared by Meredith Cleary and it was a total homerun! Ever since I served Meredith's meatloaf a couple of week ago, our friends have been asking about the recipe. They were so happy to hear that she was involved in this lunch and were grateful to have her cooking! She really knows how to transfer love into food. I like to think that is one of her superpowers. We served 74 lunches and a boat load of hugs that day. Earlier in the week, the community lost two great people and the neighborhood was feeling it. It hit really close to home for them to lose someone important to them. 
 Thursday, the 7th, was made possible by the lovely Rachel Gucwa and her awesome power team.They make SLP 50 sandwiches each week for our friend in Kensington.  We appreciate Rachel and her friends love and dedication to SLP. Thank you for your time, your energy and your love! You've got friends in SLP forever! We also had the priviledge of being apart of Cheerleaders' 22nd birthday party! They nominate 7 charities to raise money for and bring awareness too. The turnout was wonderful and it was a great time! Thank you for everyone that showed up and showed us some love! 
  Barb Heim really saved the day on Friday with her 60 lunches for Kensington! We reached out as a last minute effort to get Friday covered. Without hesistation, she reached out and literally delivered! She has been such a solid force in the SLP family, it's hard to imagine this without her. Whether it's her encouraging online presence or reaching out to help with daily lunches, we couldn't do what we do without you. You're incredible. 
   Our weekend service at our Rittenhouse location was as smooth as it's ever been! We were gifted with presents and the prescence of Ava Kasper, Heather Symecko and Glenview Elementary School! They made us apart of their kindness project for the year and made 150 placemats for our guests. The guests really appreciated the creativity and care that went behing creating every placemat. Thank you guys for making our dinner service the much more special. Between our grocery store and both meals services, we served 206 meals! Thank you Amanda Diesel for providing 50 lunches for our friends in Rittenhouse! Most guests were able to leave with a bag to go which is always an awesome feeling. Thank you Amanda for your dedication and support! Thank you Tracy Phillips and family for your the 50 lunches for Kensington! Thank you being such a great friend to us and SLP! We distributed 660 meals this week! Please consider donating supplies, lunches or volunteering to SLP. Our support take a considerable hit in the summer. Homelessness is all year round friends. 
 
  
 





  

  

WEEK #227

Jun 04, 2018

 This week has been a rather emotional one. The days leading up to the encampment eviction have been ones of uncertainty and confusion. Some of our friends over the last couple of days have chosen to enter treatment or temporary shelters while others have decided to exhaust the deadline and stay under the bridges. 
   Tuesday, the 29th,  kicked off the week with 220 meals served! It was awesome having SLP in full force! We visited with friends and distributed at Kensington & Somersert and Kensington and Allegheny. Thank you to Meghan Wright for the egg and cheese sandwiches! Thank you to Courtley McKenna for the tuna sandwiches! Our friends were super appreciative of the food and the love! Later on that day, Margaux joined up Brett Verbich and served another 55 sandwiches! This was only made possible by the wonderful volunteers and the constant support we get from you! 
 Wednesday, the 30th, was something I will never forget. It was heartbreaking to see people have their belongings taken away and homes destroyed. It was embarassing to feel and see the lack of compassion from the neighborhood. Some people took it as a time to exploit others during their worst moments in life. Others found humor in their misfortune. Even though some people there had malicious intentions, there were a lot of people there to help. The wonderful Vanessa Baker organized a protest/outreach for those being evicted from the bridges. Sunday Love distrubuted 50 egg and cheese sandwiches, applesauce and water.  We also made up 50 mini care bags to coincide with everyone elses. We packed toothbrushes, underwear for both sexes and wipes. We helped a couple of friends relocate to nearby blocks and others took advantage of temporary shelter/treatment. We headed back out for lunch a couple of hours later. We distributes 70 lunches this time around. It was beautiful to watch the Outreach Community come together and accomplish what we did. There was so much love and support being shared and so many connections being made. The people who haven't had an outlet to share, were finally being heard. Giving them a platform to share their stories and experiences was something they haven't had a chance to do. It's sad that it had to come down to something like this.  While I was at Kensington & Somerset, Courtley McKenna distributed 98 lunches and 49 hygiene bags. We chatted with two friends who were seemingly ready to rehab. Although both chose different routes of how they wanted treatment, it was still a matter of making that choice and getting there. 
 Thursday, the 31st, still felt a little strange as the neighborhood was settling down from Wednesday's evictions. We caught up with a couple of friends including T, who just lost everything she owned. We shared 55 sandwiches with our friends and lots of words of encouragement. We ended the week with another 50 lunches and lots of new friends. We want to thank all the new connections we've made in Kensington for sharing information about friends and loved ones. For easing our minds when we haven't seen that special someone for a couple of days. For reaching out and supporting not only our friends but each other. We look forward these connections blossoming and spreading the love ten fold! 
  Even though the weather was crazy this weekend, the rain didn't keep away the great times at our Rittenhouse location! Sunday Night's dinner had some bumps throughout the night but in the end was a huge success. We served 49 meals. Our volunteers gave 110% and showed our guests just how special these moments with them are. Monday brunch was a great way round out the week, We served 53 meals during our brunch service and 50 bagged lunches. This brings us to a total of 695 lunches for the week! To sit back and think of serving 695 meals is absolutely mind boggling and couldn't have happened without our friends and family. Day in and day out, our SLP family is there for us through every obstacle! We love you so much SLP fam!

   

 



Week #226

May 28, 2018

This week in Kensington was tense and a little difficult with the encampment evictions just a week away. We met with friends and made plans to keep in touch. Thanks to Meredith Cleary, we started Tuesday, the 22nd, with 65 lunches. Our friends love anything fresh and homemade especially Meredith's cooking. We also introduced the idea of expanding our meal distributions. With the help of our friends and supporters of SLP, we got the ball rolling on this successfully. We look forward to continuing to expand and making more connections. Thank you for your constant love and support friends! 
  On Wednesday, the 23rd, we served 65 lunches with the help of Meghan Wright from the Abbaye! Thank you for your constant support and your delicious treats! During our lunch service, we caught up a little with A. He's had a bad infection in his mouth from a broken tooth. Since then, he started taking an old prescription of antibiotics and the swelling has gone down. It was also really nice to see J. He was in a particularly good mood today. We cherish these worriless moments with our friends. 
  Thursday, the 24th, was a nice change to our usual menu items. We used lots of fresh veggies while still keeping it simple and it was well recieved. 45 servings of that went out. We had a really great conversation with an awesome guy about detox. He was ready to move and start living his life again. W is such a talented and incredible young man. I've seen him take simple cloths or plain paper and create something completely new. He says he feels the love and support but it's hard to get over that first hump. We reminded him that what friends are for. To lean and rely on when life gets rough. 
 Another 50 lunches went out on Friday, the 25th, thanks to Amanda Diesel. Amanda is a member of the Church of the Holy Trinity and a great friend to SLP. Even with her busy schedule, she still manages to reach out and spread the love! Thank you Amanda for always thinking of us and for being awesome!
   This Sunday, the 27th, was held together by our awesome volunteers and Margaux Murphy. We serve 54 full dinners and 3 guests left with "to go" meals. Thank you to Food Connect for the weekly drop off of Snap Kitchen meals, bread and tons of other goodies. Through Food Connect, we never have to deny anyone food and that is an incredible feeling.  Monday was a great brunch service as we served another 54 meals. Thank you  to the Phillips' family for joining us as a whole this service! They provide 50 lunches each week and Tracy stays to help for Monday's brunch! The Phillips' are the definition of LOVE and we're so grateful to be apart of it! Thank you to everyone that contributed to this weeks lunches and for the constant support!

    

    

WEEK #225

May 21, 2018

As the encampment evictions get closer, Kensington is starting to take a little turn. The threat of having their homes taken is scary. Most of our friends are struggling to make it day to day and are now being forced to make plans for weeks in advance. We'll see how everything pans out. In the meantime, the community has been coming together to make sure our brothers and sisters aren't being neglected or forgotten. Though options may seem to be thinning, there is always hope and a way. Tuesday, the 15th, was a strong day with 60 lunches to start the new week. A lot of our friends were having to make some rash decisions in the upcoming weeks so, food seemed to be the last on everyone's list. The humidity didn't help either. Water is always in high demand. Even when someone refuses food, they will rarely pass up water. In addtion to our 60 lunches, we dropped off French Toast and Spinach salad off to our friend at the Kensington Storefront  for Tea & Textiles. Thank you to Meredith Cleary, Daniel Murnane, Meghan Wright and our SLP supporters! We love you to the moon and back!
 
   Wednesday, the 16th, lunches were made possible by Mary and Ringo at the Bagel Place and Meghan Wright. Anytime their establishment have an excess of anything, SLP is always on their radar. They never fail to reach out to us and remind of us that there are some awesome humans on this planet. With the help of these awesome folks, we were able to distribute 60 lunches, 60 pairs of socks, lots of snacks and water. We made some further connections with some great people and reminded them just how loved they are. It may be the only time they hear it that day. 

  Thursday, the 17th, we rocked out in full force! Thanks to Beth Esposito for the 30 corned beef and cheese wraps and High Point Cafe for the delicious pastries! While Margaux and Beth were on Monmouth st, we posted up at Kensington and Somerset. We served 50 addtional lunches while we were there. The friends we saw today were not in good shape. Whether it was a physical or mental ailment, there was something that was weighing them down. We do our best to stay prepared for immediate emergencies, such as overdose reversal, bandaids, antiseptic and water. We also prepare ourselves with local resources and hosptials in the area. Luckily, we have some incredible community based and city funded organizations that are providing safe spaces and recources for our friends that are ready to make the next step and keeping them safe until they are. I almost lost a friend that day. If it wasn't for Narcan and the training being provided, we could have lost J. 

 Friday, the 18th, was a cold day in more than one way. The weather definitely kept some people away from their normal routine. The short time we had with friends was cherished and appreciated. Just knowing that this week may have been a little better than the last is worth asking. If the week was worse, there's a chance to talk/work it out with friends like SLP. We stress that no time is the wrong time as long as you are ready. We distrubuted 80 lunches and 50 pairs of socks to our friends. Socks and undergarments are in need during the rainy/humid seasons. Something as simple as a fresh pair of underwear can save someone's life. Shout out to BOMBAS for being such a staple in our efforts to reaching our friends in need! 

 Sunday, the 20th, was another wonderful day at the Church of the Holy Trinity! Sunday Night's Dinner service was an absolute delight. The atmosphere and the meal was loved and appreciated by all. We pumped out 54 meals and had a great time in the process. Connecting with friends week after week and making new ones is always a bonus to what we do. Shoutout to Meredith Cleary, Daniel Murnane, Skyla Edwards, Randy Bostick for keeping our kitchen together every Sunday night for us. It's awesome to watch them work together. At this point, they know each other so well they compliment each other. SLP is proud to be apart of such an amazing connection. 

Monday, the 21st, we finished off the week strong at 52 meals served at brunch and 150 lunches! Thanks to Tracy Phillips, Leslie Flynn and Troop 61028 for providing us with our lunches for that day! Bringing us to a total of 536 meals served this week! We couldn't have made it through this week without the love and support of our friends and family! Thank you to FOOD CONNECT, High Point, Meghan Wright, Mary and Ringo, Meredith Cleary and many, many other vital supporters of SLP for coming together for the sake of our brothers and sisters. 

     

   
 

Week # 224

May 14, 2018

This week was super exciting for SLP! Monday, May 7th, we started the day off with 154 lunches at the end of the day. Between the Dan Murnane's fluffy pancake meal with bacon for 54 and the bagged lunches from Leslie Flynn and Tracy Phillips, we were off to a great start! Every week, these three beautiful humans give us their time, their love and positive energy. Using their talents and connections to help our friends in need. Thank you so much for everything you do. SLP LOVES YOU! Tuesday was Ladies Night at Prevention Point where we provided Shepherds Pie and Tracy Phillips made an awesome peach cobbler and stayed to serve. Tracy is an incredible baker with an artistic eye and heart of gold. We are so fortunate to have her on our team! We made a meal for 60-70 friends and combined with our lunches that afternoon, we served around 110 meals! Thank you to Courtley McKenna for helping out with lunches that day. She is an inspiration and solid friend to us all. Hearing from where she's come from to where she is now, is nothing short of amazing. Thank you for sharing yourself with us, Courtley! Wednesday, we switched it up a little bit. We assembled 110 hygiene bags then Courtley and Margaux handed them out at Kensington and Somerset. While they did that, I served lunches on Allegheny and Kensington. We were able to share 70 lunches and water with our friends! It was empowering to know we had the whole team out there. We were uplifting our friends in so many ways that day. A super successful day for us! Thursday we shared 60 lunches with our friends and joined One Step Away as they honored individuals and their fight against homelessness. It was great to be in a room with like minded people who shared the same goals as you. The speakers shared some words of wisdom and shared some great stories. It was a great experience and a wonderful Fundraiser. Thank you for inviting us and acknowledgeing out very own Margaux Murphy. See our Events/Press page for pictures and more!  Friday was a super productive as well, thanks to the combined efforts of Margaux and Meredith Cleary for preparing for the weekend as Margaux was taking some deserved time off. After sharing another 60 meals with our friends, we were up to 300 meals between Tuesday through Friday! Monday's was accounted for in last weeks total. I just wanted to brag about our volunteers some more. All out of love and admiration, of course. The weekend's service was super successful even in Margaux's abscence. We were able to help 50 friends in our Greater Goods store and served 54 meals that night! Monday morning's brunch was relatively smooth brunch with minimal bumps as we pumped out 45 more meals. Tracy and Leslie made 50 more lunches each for Kensington. Bringing us to a total of 499 meals for the week! We couldn't have done it without all the wonderful people that support and uplift SLP and our friends in need everyday. See our GET INVOLVED page for ways to help out. We look forward to see you!

THANK YOU TO BARBRA MISHKIN FOR THE INSPIRATION CARDS! Our guests treasure this words of wisdom so, thank you!

   

WEEK #223

May 07, 2018

This Week in Kensington: This week was full of lovely interactions with our friends. It's easy to say that about every week. This one was especially beautiful. We helped a couple of friends potentially prepare for detox. Reminded others how much they are loved and thought about. We had a couple of close calls with a few friends but luckily, thanks to NARCAN and some fast thinking, those tragedies were avoided. 
   Some more wonderful news was also shared this week. Due to the encampment closures, our friends over at Prevention Point and Catholic Worker Free Clinic are expanding their hours and services. Prevention Point will be open 7 days a week from 7 am to 6 pm. Prevention Point will also be running a Wound Care van on the corner of Kensington & Lehigh on Tuesdays from 2pm-4pm. Some of our friends have been benefitting majorly from this wonderful resources. All in all, we were able to distribute 457 meals and 18 cases of water! Thank you to all of our friends and family that come together every week to help make this happen! 


This week in Rittenhouse: Since introducing the clothing to our grocery store, service has be going really smooth. We used to offer it during our Dinner Service on Sunday but felt that it took away the focus on the meal and the company. Guests would feel rushed in order to make it to the clothing rack before they headed out. You could feel the anxiety and tension in the air most nights. Once we elimanated that options, things have since settled down. The Greater Goods set up provides us with more space for more options. Its always a wonderful way to set the tone for the weekends service! 
 

 Last week, Meredith Cleary had the night off as we welcomed our guest cooks for the evening! The Babu family had reserved May 6th for our kitchen to prepare and serve a meal to commemorate Sudha Babu's late mother. They were a beautiful family of 5 who knew their way around the kitchen. They drove in from Doylestown and donated the meal for that evening! They ran like a well oiled machine! We look forward to having them back next year to commemorate their mother/grandma and if we're lucky, sooner than that! 

THE FOLLOWING PHOTOS WERE TAKEN BY OUR WONDERFUL JOE DeMAIO!







Week # 222

Apr 30, 2018

THIS WEEK IN KENSINGTON: As the weather gets warmer, you can feel the neighborhood begin to shift. Especially with the encampment clean ups (Encampment Resolution -Inquirier) at the end of the month, the area is being heavily patroled. Last week, the community lost 5 more beautiful people. It never gets easier to hear about a passing, it stings a little more to see your friends in pain. The more time we spend in Kensington, the more friends we leave with. Although the friendship isn't entirely conventional, we wouldn't trade for anything in the world. When the occasion arises, small talk can be a beautiful part of visiting Kensington. While speaking to a friend, K, she mentioned "fell out" last Saturday. K said that someone went through her stuff and stole her debit card. Someone had to give her 4 doses of Narcan until she started to come to. She knew she could have lost her life on that day. You could tell it was something she was thinking about since it happened. I tend to take the listener's approach when it comes to her. She seems to appreciate that most. I hope she knows that there is a team of people that love and support her. That we wish her nothing but the best and are here when she's ready to make a change. 
    Although it isn't often that our friends let their guards down and open up. A wonderful friend A, has mentioned this past weekl that he was ready to get some help. He knows that he has so much to live for and so much to accomplishment. He wants so much more for himself and so do we! We've exchanged numbers and have been in contact with him about taking the next step. Although there are still some obstacles to tackle, we are definitely one step closer to helping A get his life back. I can see it now. 
    As the months get warmer, we are reaching out for our friends to consider donating water/single serve pedialyte (drink or popsicles) in addition or in lieu of lunches. 

This Week on our Meal Site: This week was the last week before the new changes are being implented. The word about our grocery store is definitely spreading! We were able to assist 61 guests with groceries on Sunday Morning including sandwiches! Thanks to our wonderful friends! 



We couldn't do what we do without you! This past Sunday Night's dinner service was made was only possibly because of our awesome volunteers! We didn't have the awesome prescence of Margaux Murphy, she took a much deserved night off. The pressure was on and we were well prepared. We worked together to make sure that every guest left with a full stomach and a full heart. As our guests enjoyed the chocolate mousse cake we were serving for dessert, we reviewed some of the changes we talked about the previous week. Everyone seems to be on board for the new changes and are up for the ride. If this works out, it may open up other cool opportunites for us to connect with our guests. Outreach Programs and Resource Teams could join us  during Greater Goods. Potential guest speakers during our dinners. It's exciting to think about the possibilities. The great vibes traveled through to our Monday Brunch. Our guests were excited to join us that morning. Our volunteers were eager to help. All the tools for a successful service were there and it showed. Everyone there was happy to see one other. I couldn't think of a better way to kick off the new week. We are always looking for friends to join us during our dinner services. Check out our Get Involved Page to find way that works for you! 


FOLLOW US ON OUR NEW TWITTER ACCOUNT @SundayLovePhila! 

Week #221

Apr 23, 2018

If you haven't checked out our Events/Press page, we just posted our photo album from the WALK AGAINST HUNGER on April 21st! It was such an awesome day filled with games, music and lots of fun! The kid zone was in full effect! The theme this year was superheroes, which we thought was really great! Children were able to paint their own shields and fight against hunger! POP UP PLAY did such a wonderful job creating a positive and fun environment for the children. All the kids were having so much fun that even the adults joined in! Walking the field was definitely awesome especially after they won the superbowl this year! It definitely added to how special it was to hold it there. We were successful in raising over 1,000 dollars for Sunday Love! It almost seemed unfair to have so much fun and still raise a ton of money! Thank you to everyone who supported us and walked in the name of SUNDAY LOVE! You guys are the definition of ROCKSTARS! 

   At the Rittenhouse location, this week we have implemented a couple of new changes. We recently visited Broad Street Ministries and St. Joe's in an attempt to fizzle out the tension and negativity that can build up while waiting for our dinner service to begin. On a typical day, our guests can line up anywhere from 2-3 hours early to recieve a meal ticket. It's not completely necessary but our regular guests insist on lining up early. Standing in line anywhere for 2-3 hours would test anyone's patientence. Due to some impolite guests and complaints from the neighborhood, we are no longer allowing our guests to line up prior to 4 p.m. Also in addition to that, we are adopting BSM's reservation style. As long as you attend either Sunday Night Dinner or Monday Brunch, you are able to make a reservation for Sunday Night Dinner. It would decrease the line from 54+ guests to 24. This along with a couple of other changes, should smooth out the flow of Sunday Night Dinner. We want our main focus is to be the food and the company. Eliminating certain distractions would help everyone focus on our friends and family. We also held an open forum after last Sunday's Dinner. Even though we had some negative comments and conversations arise, guests were able to air their grievances and problem solve solutions. The room had little bursts of conversations. Even if they all disagreed with the changes, atleast it sparks a connection. That'll always be a win in our book. 

    This week in Kensington was a tough one for the community. 5 people passed away over the course of the week. It seemed to really made an impact on everyone in the neighborhood. Daily conversations on getting Narcan and what's "too hot" were being passed down from friend to friend. Unfortunately, Narcan does not do anything for K2. Over the past couple of weeks, I've grown more and more confused by this drug. Maybe it's because I don't see the appeal in it. Tonight while talking to Courtley, she mentioned how it's a full body and mental high. It's something that mimics something familiar but sends you out into the beyond. The side effects are common but somehow still extreme. The way they tighten up every muscle in their body. The way they slowly nod and their shallow breathing. I find myself perusing documentaries on when K2 was sold in smoke shops and shore stores. Depsite having to be 18 to buy it, kids as young as 14 were being hosptilized for bad reactions and addiction to the drug. The toll it takes on your body and brain. Although it's easy to spot someone on K2, it's very difficult to help them. It won't stop us from educating ourselves and our friends to help them from making life altering desicions.

 

WEEK #220

Apr 16, 2018

It's amazing to look on past posts and see where we are now! It's all thanks to our incredible supporters and volunteers. We couldn't do it without them. As the newest member of the Sunday Love Project, I've met some incredible people. The love that just pours out of everyone has been nothing short of magical. We were recently able to help a guest whom we love so much. He was recently a victim of an attack. He was hit over the head and had his belongings taken including his backpack and wallet. We took to the FACEBOOK to help Mohammed out and within days, we were able to replace most of his things with more on the way. A special thanks to Sharon Bender, Magdalena Luzunaris and Amanda Frey Hill for reaching out so quickly to help out. 

   Our past couple of events were a hit! March 17th, we were able to join FADO for their 13th annual St. Patty's Day Breakfast! We were the chosen charity for the 2nd year in a row, thanks to Tom McCourt. It was a packed event within the first 45 minutes of opening the doors. This particular St. Patty Day synced up with a televised Rugby tournament which brought in lots of people. Everyone that came was excited to hear about what Sunday Love stands for. We also had an awesome raffle basket donated by Erica Emmons Alimario! We were able to bring in $789 between the breakfast donations and raffle tickets. Thank you to our volunteers: Heather Brann, Macy Ruiz-Pedersen, Phil Anselmo, Annie Eustance, Terence and Erica Alimario. Stephanie Henry and Tom McCourt were major factores in coordinating this even. Thank you so much for allowing us the time and space to put out mission out there. YOU GUYS ROCK! Check out the video clip from FOX 29 News on our Events and Press Page! 

  Just over a week later, we had a fundraiser at PBC BREWING! On March 28th, they held a Ladies' Trivia night and helped us bring in $212 not including 10% of the bar sales! The place was packed and good times were had by all. Thank you to MaryAnne McClay, Bill and Nancy and the PBC staff for helping us reach our goal!

  Since our last post, we have been working on plans to renovate the kitchen. It's going to cost more than we originally thought but we love a challenge. We've been brainstorming and using local resources to help us get closer to our goal with the help of Madeline Guth. Despite the plans of renovations, we've been pumping out 108+ meals every Sunday evening and Monday morning. Our wonderful chef Meredith Cleary never fails to whip up a delicious meal. Most services end with guests giving their compliments to her through the food service windows. Even after working in the kitchen for hours, she always makes time to chat with the guests. I cannot name a chef that I've met that does that after the meal is served. She truly is one of our greatest gifts. WE LOVE YOU MEREDITH! Our Greater Goods store is still providing groceries and toiletries for our guests and have since included a private HIV screenings. We are working on adding more services and resources for our Greater Goods guests but the word is spreading and we're embracing it! Thank you to our past and present volunteers for all your time and support! 

  Our time out in Kensington is always bittersweet. Since starting the weekly trips out this year, we've seen a lot of new faces. The sense of community and friendships out there are beautiful though. I've learned that being genuine is one of the most important virtues you could have, sometimes that all you can rely on. I've seen the effects of being genuine and of being dishonest. Your name and your word are so important. Being accountable and reliable when you've promised soemthing, that becomes a priority. Making connections and building a rapport with our brother and sisters in need is definitely one of them. Attending events such as the Open Mic Night with Ursula Rucker and Tea and Textiles, both held at the Kensington Storefront has helped to make most of those bonds. They have provided such a warm and welcoming environment. Everyone that walks throught those doors is greeted with a big smile and a hearty hello. It's truly a unique experience every time I'm there. It's so hard to explain how magical it feels when we're there. I encourage you to check it out for yourself. As we are spending more time in Kensington, we are trying to use food as a tool to help our friends further. We have started a ID program on Saturdays mornings to help those who need replacements. Looking forward to providing more resources and knowledge for our Kensington friends. 

 AS FOR UPCOMING EVENTS: Come check us out this Saturday at Lincoln Financial Field for the WALK AGAINST HUNGER sponsored by ACME. We have raised close to $600 in a little over a week! There's still plenty of time to join our team or donate! Check out our fundraising page!

Week #138

Aug 27, 2017

Sunday LOVE was a thing of beauty (and youth!) this week. My favorite part was having two high school students and a college student in the kitchen. This is so rare. The brightest light in my life is having the ability to affect a younger generation. I believe that happened this week.

We served tuna salad sammies, fruit cups, bananas, carrots/celery, cookies, and water. I do believe those ladies churned out about 145 meals. We also served 60 egg and cheese sammies in Kensington, complements of the amazing Meghan Wright.

Thank you to our food contributors: Shannon Dougherty, Meredith Cleary, Jo Buyske, Ellyn Dvorin, Margaret Rom, Brian Foedisch, Jocelyn Craighead, Emma Hess, and Carol Pasquarello (those brownies!).

So much love to our kitchen volunteers: Gillan Conricode, Emma Hess, Maeve Ronan, Christine Wilson, and Meredith Cleary. Since we had extra help, Gillian and Emma made PBJ sammies for the next day in Kensington. Emma is already not a fan of the sammies but she has made hundreds to date, this summer. That, my friends, is a team player. I would like to mention that this was Maeve's first time with LOVE AND in Philly. Her dad, Ger, volunteers with us on the regular, driving from Massachusetts to do so. Maeve told me she wanted the whole experience, from the kitchen down to serving. She wanted to meet all of the guests we serve that her dad has told her about. This girl blew my doors off. I heard her say she was nervous just before we started the line to distribute. I believe that lasted about 2.5 seconds. She was awesome. They all were.

Thank you to our onsite volunteers: Ger and Maeve Ronan, Emma Hess, Gillian Conricode, and Joe.

Joe is currently at Hahnemann Hospital, but allowed out for two hours at a time in between treatments. I feel blessed he found his way back to us, especially given the amount of time he was given to live. He called me this week and I plan to visit him tomorrow. 

A bunch of my guys had not seen the Rachael Ray piece. I thought it was a perfect time to show them since Joe was there. He was BEAMING with pride that we have taken The Project to the next level. I told him he was a huge part of that.  Picture five guys huddled around one phone so they could either see themselves or just something they are a part of. It was awesome.

One of our guests sung Maeve a song, as well. 

It was one of the sweeter Sundays we have had and I really feel that younger energy played a huge part of that. All three young ladies plan to be back out. I truly look forward to that. Even the ever elusive Jake made an appearance!

On to Kensington…food went fast and was well appreciated. I gave out PBJ sammies when we ran out of egg and cheese because, even though I was hoping to save them for the next day, it would have been wrong to turn someone away hungry while I had food in my car.

With the exception of the mental health break I needed yesterday, food continues to be served daily in Kensington. They definitely notice when I don't show up. I am receiving a tremendous amount of kindness and respect out there because of this commitment. But two of my people on the street today told me to pace myself. Incredible.

Thank you to all who helped make Sunday LOVE another amazing experience this week.

We haven't heard from Melvin in a bit. Melvin replaced Joe as our "once homeless but moved on up" volunteer. It's odd that he is not there now when Joe has been. 

You all are amazing people and I am so grateful I get to share one day a week with you. please keep showing the LOVE and sharing the water. It is so hot. My guys in Kenzo told me a man on the Ave leaves his spigot on in the front of his house so they can refill water bottles. Kindness exists everywhere.

Thank you. xoxo

Week #137

Aug 20, 2017

It was all about volunteer, Ann Borell. That amazing woman not only helped me with the 2pm prep, but then stayed through dinner service. That was a solid 7 hours in the kitchen and onsite at two locations. She cranked out 105 Brioche Caprese Sammies which we served with fruit cups, and cookies/brownies.

LOVE Park was lightning fast, as usual. We served everything in about ten minutes. Thanks to our other volunteers: Ger Ronan and his amazing wife, Anna. We had the usual mix of gratitude and disgruntled guests. 

Thank you to those who contributed food: Ann Borell, Jocelyn Craighead, and Colleen Daniel.

The evening service was awesome. There really hasn't been much of a learning curve in the dinner service. Most of our volunteers are LOVE veterans at this point so we all just sort of hit a groove together. 

Many thanks to Nell Bradley who ran the kitchen. We are striving to get to our max seating of 54 guests but the word is not completely out yet. So, we are grateful for the smaller crowd so we can take our time and learn. We served 25 meals of: Meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and corn. We served peanut butter/chocolate cakes for dessert (thanks to Nicole Hess).

Thank you to all of our volunteers: Nell Bradley, Ann Borell, Carol Romanies, The Hess Family: Nicole, Franny, Emma, and Charlotte, and Meredith Cleary.

The guests raved about the meal and appreciated all of the personal touches like fresh flowers on the tables. I was so impressed with the positivity of our volunteers and their ability to work together so well. I totally scored rockstars with this nonprofit.

Week #136

Aug 13, 2017

Church of the Holy Trinity:  The folks at the church took over in my absence. They served turkey and cheese hoagies, chips, fruit, and snacks. I believe they served around 150 meals at LOVE Park. Thanks to Esha Batia, Sally Griffith, and John Gardner for heading the project. And of course, thank you to all who contributed and/or volunteered on site. Thanks for letting me take a vacation!

Week #135

Aug 06, 2017

We served about 130 meals of: Loaded pasta salad, dinner rolls, cookies/brownies, and water. We served an additional 60 egg and cheese sammies in Kensington, thanks to Meghan Wright.

Thanks to our cooks and food contributors: Jocelyn Craighead, Meredith Cleary, and Margaret Rom.

Thank you to our kitchen help: Meredith and Lauren Cleary, and Margaret Rom.All went well at LOVE. Fast as always. Folks are very inquisitive about my vacation. 

Kensington enjoyed their last week of Sunday egg and cheese sammies as I can no longer serve there on Sundays because we are now serving at Holy Trinity Church for dinner, following the lunch service at LOVE Park. There tends to be many groups that serve in Kensington on the weekends, so I am not overly concerned. I will still serve there Monday-Friday.

Week #134

Jul 30, 2017

We served 126 meals of: Chicken Ceasar Salad, dinner rolls, cookies/brownies, fruit, and water. 

Thank you to our cooks and food contributors: Karyn Leibovitz, Jocelyn Craighead, Ellyn Dvorin, Julia Thompson, and Carol Pasquarello.

Much love to our amazing mother/daughter team that prepared and plated all of the food: Tina McCarthy and Taitlyn. Thank you to that amazing duo for coming out to serve, as well. Joe showed up to serve, even though he was supposed to be in a hospital bed. He did a great job but jot was clear he was exhausted when it was over. I ran him back to the hospital and headed back to the church to prepare for dinner service.

We served our first dinner through the Meals and More grant we received. It was truly lovely. Tablecloths and cloth napkins, and fresh flower centerpieces made by Gillian Conricode. Thank you to our cooks: Meredith Cleary, Joanie Balderstone, Rebecca McIntire, Margaret Rom, and Esha Batia. We served: Open faced roast beef, roasted potatoes, fresh green beans, garden salad, and brownies with whipped cream and strawberries for dessert. 

Thank you to our amazing servers: Emily LaBree, Lynn and PJ Rowan, Kate Heisler, John Gardner, Nicole, Luke, and Emma Hess, and Carol Romanies.

Much love to our (usher) volunteers from The Last Stop: T'juan and Marcy.

We only served 18 meals because word has not yet gotten out about the new site. I suspect it will be a full house next week.While it was a TON of work to serve so few, it felt very intimate and comfortable. Everyone loved the food and the service. This is a sit down meal so every table was assigned their own server. It was truly lovely and everyone did a fantastic job. 

Kate Heisler, Sharon Suleta, and the Hess team all donated sandwiches so we had plenty of bagged lunches if we had an overflow. Since that didn't happen, I was able to serve about 74 lunches the following day in Kensington. Thank you to all of you!!! 

Monday brunch was a hustle but all went well. We served: yogurt with fruit and homemade granola, oatmeal with blueberry compote, bagels and cream cheese, individual quiches, garden salad, and coffee. Attendance was low but again, very few knew it was happening. We served 20 people. Our goal for each seating is 50 people.

Thank you to our cooks: Meredith Cleary, Ben Lariccia, and Peter Ryker. Thank you our servers: John Gardner and Jim McElwain. Much gratitude to our ushers: T'juan and Marcy.

The indoor service was super fun and I am so excited about the upcoming weeks. We will be doing this for one year, so please get involved. If you are interested in serving at the church, please sign up through the Church of the Holy Trinity Facebook page. We need cooks, servers, and ushers every Sunday evening and Monday morning.

Thank you to all who pitched in to make our first two seatings so wonderful. This Project is nothing without its volunteers, so I thank you all from the bottom of my bleeding heart:) 

I hope to see you all again, as well as some new faces! Much LOVE. xoxo

Week #134

Jul 30, 2017

We served 126 meals of: Chicken Ceasar Salad, dinner rolls, cookies/brownies, fruit, and water. 

Thank you to our cooks and food contributors: Karyn Leibovitz, Jocelyn Craighead, Ellyn Dvorin, Julia Thompson, and Carol Pasquarello.

Much love to our amazing mother/daughter team that prepared and plated all of the food: Tina McCarthy and Taitlyn. Thank you to that amazing duo for coming out to serve, as well. Joe showed up to serve, even though he was supposed to be in a hospital bed. He did a great job but jot was clear he was exhausted when it was over. I ran him back to the hospital and headed back to the church to prepare for dinner service.

We served our first dinner through the Meals and More grant we received. It was truly lovely. Tablecloths and cloth napkins, and fresh flower centerpieces made by Gillian Conricode. Thank you to our cooks: Meredith Cleary, Joanie Balderstone, Rebecca McIntire, Margaret Rom, and Esha Batia. We served: Open faced roast beef, roasted potatoes, fresh green beans, garden salad, and brownies with whipped cream and strawberries for dessert. 

Thank you to our amazing servers: Emily LaBree, Lynn and PJ Rowan, Kate Heisler, John Gardner, Nicole, Luke, and Emma Hess, and Carol Romanies.

Much love to our (usher) volunteers from The Last Stop: T'juan and Marcy.

We only served 18 meals because word has not yet gotten out about the new site. I suspect it will be a full house next week.While it was a TON of work to serve so few, it felt very intimate and comfortable. Everyone loved the food and the service. This is a sit down meal so every table was assigned their own server. It was truly lovely and everyone did a fantastic job. 

Kate Heisler, Sharon Suleta, and the Hess team all donated sandwiches so we had plenty of bagged lunches if we had an overflow. Since that didn't happen, I was able to serve about 74 lunches the following day in Kensington. Thank you to all of you!!! 

Monday brunch was a hustle but all went well. We served: yogurt with fruit and homemade granola, oatmeal with blueberry compote, bagels and cream cheese, individual quiches, garden salad, and coffee. Attendance was low but again, very few knew it was happening. We served 20 people. Our goal for each seating is 50 people.

Thank you to our cooks: Meredith Cleary, Ben Lariccia, and Peter Ryker. Thank you our servers: John Gardner and Jim McElwain. Much gratitude to our ushers: T'juan and Marcy.

The indoor service was super fun and I am so excited about the upcoming weeks. We will be doing this for one year, so please get involved. If you are interested in serving at the church, please sign up through the Church of the Holy Trinity Facebook page. We need cooks, servers, and ushers every Sunday evening and Monday morning.

Thank you to all who pitched in to make our first two seatings so wonderful. This Project is nothing without its volunteers, so I thank you all from the bottom of my bleeding heart:) 

I hope to see you all again, as well as some new faces! Much LOVE. xoxo

Week #133

Jul 23, 2017

Another successful Sunday LOVE. Thank you to our kitchen volunteers: Jennifer Stueve and The Brandt Family: Mary Beth, Jim, Caroline, Tim, and Joe.

Much gratitude to our food contributors: Angie Stott, Mary Beth Brandt, Meredith Cleary, Jocelyn Craighead, Ellyn Dvorin, and Colleen Daniel.

We served 105 meals of Tuna Salad over greens, carrots/celery, and brownies/cookies. Everyone was incredibly efficient and super helpful. One of the kids, Tim, said he felt more productive helping to serve the homeless than staying at home playing video games. That's a win. His parents are clearly doing something right! So grateful to all of you for your help. Thank you to Jennifer Stueve who brought a boatload of sneakers to donate. Her kids left for college so it was the perfect opportunity to clean house and help others.

The guests at LOVE Park were mostly well-behaved. There was one woman who read me the riot act because she only got one serving…

Dinner service: Nell Bradley took the reigns again and ran the show. We served 36 meals (increasing!) of :Pulled chicken over Spanish rice and beans, fresh green beans, and a dinner roll. Strawberry shortcakes with fresh whip for dessert. The guests RAVED. 

Thank you to all of our volunteers who made this meal possible: Nell Bradley, Meredith Cleary, Sally Griffith, Ruth Sperber, Tina McCarthy and Taitlyn, Emma Hess, Gillian Conricode, Twan, and Marci.

Everything was super smooth and all of our guest were very impressed. Seconds, please!

We also distributed hygiene bags (extra points for nail clippers, Cherise Poserina!) and clothing. Many thanks to all who sent items for bags or donated much needed items. You blow my little mind with your kindness.

We are also serving Monday brunch and it is going wonderfully. Our numbers are increasing and folks are so grateful to get a healthy meal and COFFEE! Shout out to Bob Logue at Bodhi Cafe for donating the caffeine. And much love to David Roseman at The Bagel Place for donating bagels for our brunch service, and beyond. Please support these wonderful local businesses.

I am going to limit my updates to Sundays because it truly will become a book if I include Mondays. But if you are a part of Mondays, please know how much you are appreciated. None of this could happen without ALL of you. Sometimes I just sit back and think, dreams really do come true. Thank you for helping this little notion of mine come to fruition on a scale much larger than I had ever considered. I am nothing without each and every one of you.

My cup runneth over...

Week #132

Jul 16, 2017

Sunday LOVE was a thing of beauty (and youth!) this week. My favorite part was having two high school students and a college student in the kitchen. This is so rare. The brightest light in my life is having the ability to affect a younger generation. I believe that happened this week.

We served tuna salad sammies, fruit cups, bananas, carrots/celery, cookies, and water. I do believe those ladies churned out about 145 meals. We also served 60 egg and cheese sammies in Kensington, complements of the amazing Meghan Wright.

Thank you to our food contributors: Shannon Dougherty, Meredith Cleary, Jo Buyske, Ellyn Dvorin, Margaret Rom, Brian Foedisch, Jocelyn Craighead, Emma Hess, and Carol Pasquarello (those brownies!).

So much love to our kitchen volunteers: Gillan Conricode, Emma Hess, Maeve Ronan, Christine Wilson, and Meredith Cleary. Since we had extra help, Gillian and Emma made PBJ sammies for the next day in Kensington. Emma is already not a fan of the sammies but she has made hundreds to date, this summer. That, my friends, is a team player. I would like to mention that this was Maeve's first time with LOVE AND in Philly. Her dad, Ger, volunteers with us on the regular, driving from Massachusetts to do so. Maeve told me she wanted the whole experience, from the kitchen down to serving. She wanted to meet all of the guests we serve that her dad has told her about. This girl blew my doors off. I heard her say she was nervous just before we started the line to distribute. I believe that lasted about 2.5 seconds. She was awesome. They all were.

Thank you to our onsite volunteers: Ger and Maeve Ronan, Emma Hess, Gillian Conricode, and Joe.

Joe is currently at Hahnemann Hospital, but allowed out for two hours at a time in between treatments. I feel blessed he found his way back to us, especially given the amount of time he was given to live. He called me this week and I plan to visit him tomorrow. 

A bunch of my guys had not seen the Rachael Ray piece. I thought it was a perfect time to show them since Joe was there. He was BEAMING with pride that we have taken The Project to the next level. I told him he was a huge part of that.  Picture five guys huddled around one phone so they could either see themselves or just something they are a part of. It was awesome.

One of our guests sung Maeve a song, as well. 

It was one of the sweeter Sundays we have had and I really feel that younger energy played a huge part of that. All three young ladies plan to be back out. I truly look forward to that. Even the ever elusive Jake made an appearance!

On to Kensington…food went fast and was well appreciated. I gave out PBJ sammies when we ran out of egg and cheese because, even though I was hoping to save them for the next day, it would have been wrong to turn someone away hungry while I had food in my car.

With the exception of the mental health break I needed yesterday, food continues to be served daily in Kensington. They definitely notice when I don't show up. I am receiving a tremendous amount of kindness and respect out there because of this commitment. But two of my people on the street today told me to pace myself. Incredible.

Thank you to all who helped make Sunday LOVE another amazing experience this week.

We haven't heard from Melvin in a bit. Melvin replaced Joe as our "once homeless but moved on up" volunteer. It's odd that he is not there now when Joe has been. 

You all are amazing people and I am so grateful I get to share one day a week with you. please keep showing the LOVE and sharing the water. It is so hot. My guys in Kenzo told me a man on the Ave leaves his spigot on in the front of his house so they can refill water bottles. Kindness exists everywhere.

Thank you. xoxo

Week #131

Jul 09, 2017

Sunday LOVE was on point this week. It was hot, but I heard not one complaint. The kitchen volunteers were awesome and incredibly efficient, timing things perfectly so nothing got cold before hitting the park.

We served 155 meals of: Brioche grilled cheese and tomato, potato salad, tater tots, bananas, cookies, and water.We also had a generous donation of a Bacon, egg, and cheese bake, thanks to Cia Cinaglia.

Thank you to Meghan Wright for the 50 hot egg and cheese sammies for Kensington. They are so incredibly appreciated.

If you would like to read more about what happens in Kensington, please "friend" me personally on Facebook as I am sort of separating the two areas.

Thank you to our food contributors: Shannon Dougherty, Jocelyn Craighead, Brianna Lindsay, Carol Pasquarello, Mary Beth Brandt, and Beverly Todor.

Much gratitude to our kitchen volunteers: Tom McCahill, Caroline and Mary Beth Brandt, and Karyn Leibovitz.

We were also fortunate enough to have Lindsey McCahill and her daughters: Emma and Lucy, show us how to make plarn (plastic yarn). Lindsey has been making mats for us to distribute to the homeless.She brought one finished mat yesterday that I gave to a man in Kensington. It was greatly appreciated. Caroline Brandt mastered the process of actually crocheting the plarn. I watched in awe as I couldn't comprehend getting past cutting the plastic bag strips.( I am a VERY slow learner). We are collecting plastic shopping bags on a regular basis, so if you need to clear out, we will happily be your drop off! This is recycling at its finest!

Thank you to the onsite volunteers at LOVE Park: The McCahill Family, Ger Ronan, and Joe…

Some of you may remember Joe from the first year of the Project. He was the first homeless volunteer we had who stepped up to help us out. He was religious about showing up on Sundays and treated it like his job. Joe became family to many of us. And then one day, he just disappeared.

As I stepped out of my car on Sunday, he was the first to greet me. After asking him where he had been and telling him how worried I was, he handed me a piece of paper. Told me everything I needed to know was in the section he circled. As I read, I fought back tears. I continued to unload the car, pretending I hadn't just read a letter from Joe's doctor stating he has 6 months to live. Joe has tumors on his liver and it is too far advanced to be placed on a transplant list… I watched as the volunteers took over and let me fade into the background. Joe handed out candy. I disappeared down the line, checking on my regulars. I joked with people and smiled while a part of me was dying.

All went well at LOVE. The food disappeared fast and people were grateful. I picked up trash and got ready for the next round in Kensington.

I drove Joe to Broad and Spring Garden so he could get back to where he is staying. He told me he is torn about telling his kids. He told me he is scared. This is not the Joe I once knew. He has grown gentler. No temper. He admits this took him completely by surprise. He is 55 years old.

Joe IS The Sunday LOVE Project to me. He was the first person on the street who extended himself to me, told me his story. As he opened my car door, I looked at him, smiled, and said, "Go on, get the hell out. I need to cry my way to Kensington." He gave me a hug and told me he loves me. He told me he needed to come find me because I am family. I told him I expect to see him next week, health permitting. He has an opportunity to go into hospice and he likes the idea. He just thinks it's not quite time to give up. He has had one chemo treatment so far.

I never knew how profoundly I could be affected by someone I spent a year of Sundays with, until now. My heart is broken, but we are not done.

Thank you to all who chipped in this week to make Sunday LOVE happen. We need you all more than you know.

Please help us to keep this machine moving. I love you all. xoxo

Week #130

Jul 02, 2017

Sunday LOVE had beautiful weather this week and a very long line. Unfortunately, the sign up was weak so we only served 105 meals at LOVE at about 55 sammies in Kensington.

We served: Chicken/tuna salad sammies, pasta salad/potato salad, cookies, and water at LOVE Park. In Kensington, we served egg and cheese sammies, complements of Meghan Wright. I cannot express how much folks love these sandwiches. People ask me everyday if that's what I am serving. It's like the highlight of their food week!

Thank you to our cooks and food contributors: Jocelyn Craighead, Wendy Williams Cooper, Colleen Daniels, and Shannon Dougherty.

I skipped the church kitchen and kicked it old school, just preparing at home since there were no kitchen volunteers. I cannot physically fit more than 105 meals in my car so food must be limited when there is no help. That being said, even though Sunday was light, we are still putting out about 500-550 meals a week as I am serving daily in Kensington.

Thank you to our onsite volunteers: Ger Ronan and Tom and Kathy Hoffman. Your help was greatly appreciated as we served 105 meals in five minutes. The machine was moving smoothly!

People were much better about forming a single line this week. That was a real struggle in the previous weeks. Not everyone got food, but there was another group serving just after us so hopefully all were fed.

People were in good spirits and very thankful. It was a nice change!

In Kensington, food went FAST. People were dying for water. They were so excited about getting clementines. The little things… They know they are malnourished and they are thrilled to receive healthy food.

Distributed the backpacks that were collected by Heather Brann and Megan Garber. HUGE hit. Saw a bunch of people wearing them today. 

Thank you to Colleen Daniels for sending new sheets and pillows for Erin and Mike, who recently got a room.

I cannot place enough emphasis on the need for water. I am going through about 100 bottles daily. And that is still not enough. I have plenty of storage so please keep it coming!

Much gratitude to Donna Pironti for sending snacks, hygiene products, and UNDERWEAR. We so desperately need it.

Thank you to Jen Gallagher for the sneaker donations. There were several people WITHOUT shoes who were able to fit the sneaks I brought out. THANK YOU!

We struggle HARD in the summers to get donations to keep this thing moving. We need it now more than ever as the meal distribution has increased. We always need pantry items: pudding cups, fruit cups, applesauce, soft granola bars, peanut butter, jelly, etc. So far I have been able to prepare meals daily after work without falling back on bagged lunches. But we like to be prepared so please PBJ me!

Thank you to Lindsey McCahill. Her kids and some friends held a lemonade stand last week and raised $150.90 for LOVE. They also gave us some pantry items and some wonderful cards the kids made for our guests.

Thank you so much to all who helped out this week. Even when it's lean, we get it done but the help is so very much appreciated.

You are beautiful humans. 

xoxo

Week #129

Jun 25, 2017

Sunday LOVE had beautiful weather this week and a very long line. Unfortunately, the sign up was weak so we only served 105 meals at LOVE at about 55 sammies in Kensington.

We served: Chicken/tuna salad sammies, pasta salad/potato salad, cookies, and water at LOVE Park. In Kensington, we served egg and cheese sammies, complements of Meghan Wright. I cannot express how much folks love these sandwiches. People ask me everyday if that's what I am serving. It's like the highlight of their food week!

Thank you to our cooks and food contributors: Jocelyn Craighead, Wendy Williams Cooper, Colleen Daniels, and Shannon Dougherty.

I skipped the church kitchen and kicked it old school, just preparing at home since there were no kitchen volunteers. I cannot physically fit more than 105 meals in my car so food must be limited when there is no help. That being said, even though Sunday was light, we are still putting out about 500-550 meals a week as I am serving daily in Kensington.

Thank you to our onsite volunteers: Ger Ronan and Tom and Kathy Hoffman. Your help was greatly appreciated as we served 105 meals in five minutes. The machine was moving smoothly!

People were much better about forming a single line this week. That was a real struggle in the previous weeks. Not everyone got food, but there was another group serving just after us so hopefully all were fed.

People were in good spirits and very thankful. It was a nice change!

In Kensington, food went FAST. People were dying for water. They were so excited about getting clementines. The little things… They know they are malnourished and they are thrilled to receive healthy food.

Distributed the backpacks that were collected by Heather Brann and Megan Garber. HUGE hit. Saw a bunch of people wearing them today. 

Thank you to Colleen Daniels for sending new sheets and pillows for Erin and Mike, who recently got a room.

I cannot place enough emphasis on the need for water. I am going through about 100 bottles daily. And that is still not enough. I have plenty of storage so please keep it coming!

Much gratitude to Donna Pironti for sending snacks, hygiene products, and UNDERWEAR. We so desperately need it.

Thank you to Jen Gallagher for the sneaker donations. There were several people WITHOUT shoes who were able to fit the sneaks I brought out. THANK YOU!

We struggle HARD in the summers to get donations to keep this thing moving. We need it now more than ever as the meal distribution has increased. We always need pantry items: pudding cups, fruit cups, applesauce, soft granola bars, peanut butter, jelly, etc. So far I have been able to prepare meals daily after work without falling back on bagged lunches. But we like to be prepared so please PBJ me!

Thank you to Lindsey McCahill. Her kids and some friends held a lemonade stand last week and raised $150.90 for LOVE. They also gave us some pantry items and some wonderful cards the kids made for our guests.

Thank you so much to all who helped out this week. Even when it's lean, we get it done but the help is so very much appreciated.

You are beautiful humans. 

xoxo

Week #128

Jun 18, 2017

Sunday LOVE was hot and a bit testy yesterday. The volunteers were amazing and efficient.We saw some new faces on the volunteer side of the line, which is always welcome!

At LOVE Park, we served :120 Mozzarella, tomato, and basil sandwiches, chips, fruit, cookies, and water. We also gave out about 20 ham and cheese sandwiches. 

Kensington got about 50 egg and cheese sammies, complements of Meghan Wright.

There were a variety of complaints yesterday. Not so much about the food, but about why I didn't have socks, tee shirts, book bags, etc. The weather tends to bring out the beast in folks when it gets hot. One man told me he was grateful for what he DID have, and that was the silver lining.

Our kitchen team was lean this week, but perfect! Thank you to Abby Steel, Tina McCarthy, and her daughter, Taitlyn. It was inspiring to see two teenagers in the kitchen yesterday. They both have love for those less fortunate, and it showed. 

Thank you to our food contributors and cooks: Jocelyn Craighead, Carol Pasquarello, and Shannon Dougherty.

Thank you to our onsite volunteers: Kevin Kennedy and Cora Charpentier and their sweet little ones,( Cora also brought about 50 hygiene bags to distribute that were donated, sorted, and assembled by the kids at South Philly Co-op Playschool), Linda Giminez, andy Ungaro, Tina and Taitlyn, Abby Steel, Ger Ronan, and Meredith Cleary.It gets very challenging to get volunteers out in the heat and I am so grateful to all who persevered yesterday.

The Kennedy kids gave out tootsie rolls and smiles. Children always bring joy and I think it's so important for them to see, from an early age, that people are people. There is beauty within a child that we often lose with age. They are pure love.

Not every day can be an amazing day out there. Although there were many demands and gripes, there were more thanks and gratitude. It is always so nice to see our regular guests and continue to build those relationships.

(A quick note: I have not seen Slim in a few weeks…AGAIN).

Recently, I was talking to the chef at Broad Street Ministry about our new serving time indoors that will start in August. He mentioned that when people get out of line at BSM, they take a little time-out. They stay away for a short period of time until they can properly behave in a group setting. When I left the park yesterday, I thought they may need a collective time-out. It has become so demanding there because it is a central location for serving the homeless. We are one of very few groups that serve on the weekends on a regular basis. As much as I want to change locations, I am not sure that is the right thing to do. I know they count on us and I would feel awful about taking away something they have come to rely on. So, for now, we will keep on truckin' and hope for a better week next week.

There is something to be said for the guests telling me we are crazy to still be coming out after some of the things people have said and done. Maybe it's me that needs a time out!

Rest assured, LOVE is not going anywhere. I just want to share my honest opinion with you. 

I served in two locations in Kensington. Since I brought my negative attitude with me, it wasn't much better. Folks watched from across the street for about 15 minutes while I served. As I got into my car to leave, people came running. THREE TIMES. I was told (by an active addict) not to get out of my car after I pack up because eventually, someone may steal my car. While that is not a major concern, it is more that I see I may be too accommodating. I think when I leave, I should leave. This is a move that happens at LOVE Park, weekly. It's one thing to be late. It's another thing entirely to watch from the sidelines because crossing the street is a hassle and then inconvenience me as I try to get hot food to the next stop. It just feels like a power play. I have been serving daily over there and if I don't lay the ground rules now, I feel I will become a doormat.

Don't get me wrong: I have boatloads of compassion and respect. But that respect factor needs to be a two-way street.

Did I say the guests were griping??? Maybe it was just me.

I am in love with this project. Some days are just harder than others, I guess. 

I am so thankful to the volunteers for being amazing and continuing to smile through it all. This IS the LOVE.

Favorite part of the day? One of our guests playing with one of the Kennedy kids. They were both laughing, as was everyone who watched their interaction. I can guarantee that man took that smile with him, all day long.

Please forgive my negativity in this update. It would be dishonest to not be human and just report all the good stuff all of the time. This is life. This is poverty. Ultimately, this is LOVE.

Thank you, all. I love you.

xoxo

Week #127

Jun 11, 2017

Sunday LOVE was a powerhouse in the kitchen this week! The weather was not completely brutal, but I can already see some of the negativity it brings out in our guests. Heat and complaints seem to be a married couple. Nonetheless, we had a great time and served 115 meals at LOVE Park and 50 sammies in Kensington.

At LOVE Park, we served: Mini Baked Ham and Swiss Sliders, potato salad, fruit cups, rice krispy treats, clementines, and water. The meal was well-received. Another group was there just before us but our food still disappeared in about ten minutes.

Thank you to our kitchen volunteers: Jennifer and Katie Stueve, and Fran Hess. While most of our volunteers are very efficient in the kitchen, this was the first week everything worked out perfectly. Getting done early is awesome, but works against us if we are serving hot food. Jennifer and her daughter constructed and baked all of the sammies while Fran made bagged lunches for the overflow in Kensington. (I had already made about 200 PBJ sammies this weekend and the smell of peanut butter was starting to get to me)! I was so grateful for the help. I ended up not needing all of the bagged lunches yesterday, so I was able to serve them today in addition to another 30 hot ham and cheese sammies. I love being prepared! The bagged lunches are good to always have on hand because we will, undoubtedly, run out of the other food we are serving so the back up is key.

Thank you to our food contributors: Meghan Wright (Kensington sammies that are now synonymous with "Sunday LOVE", Jennifer Stueve,Jennifer Linwood, Margaret Rom, Nicole Hess, Erica Alimario, Jocelyn Craighead, Meredith Cleary, Barb Kueny, Wendy Cooper, Joanne Murphy, Amelia Dinina, Erin Shine, Colleen Daniel, and Jo Buyske. 

Much LOVE to our onsite volunteers: Jennifer and Katie Stueve, Meredith Cleary, Lori Judge, Barbara Samson, Heather Symecko, and Paul and Ava Kasper. Ava is like Sunday LOVE's newest mascot. She is so happy to help and loves to volunteer. She brought her grandmother and her parents this week so we had three generations serving LOVE. That's pretty awesome.

The food line went fast and we were packing up by 2:10pm. As we were doing so, Rose Miller and Deborah Horan showed up with children from Linden Elementary (Christopher Horan, AJ Helveston, and Luke and Logan Miller) to distribute backpacks from their school drive in Doylestown. Thank you to Calise and Ava Wanko for helping to collect, as well. The students had collected 73 new backpacks for LOVE. 

Thank you to Stacey Wanko, Rose,and Deborah for creating the collection. The third and fifth graders at Linden made and decorated the best box EVER for backpack drop-off. 

It actually worked out perfectly that they arrived after we were done serving because it can be a bit chaotic when there is more than one thing going on at once. Anyway, the boys did a great job with giving away backpacks and I think they all felt positive about the experience. Since most folks went down to Suburban Station, we took the show on the road. Not too many people were outside after they got food, due to the heat. 

The boys were appreciated by everyone they encountered. They were courteous and enthusiastic and we so appreciate their service. Rose, Deb, and Stacey are hoping this will be the legacy of their fifth graders as they transition into middle school. I commend the school and the students for making a difference in their community. The children are the future and this is a perfect example of looking out for your neighbor. To share is to love. It's one of life's most valuable lessons.

Kensington was lightning fast. They have come to expect the egg and cheese sammies every week and look forward to them. I don't know what will happen if I ever bring something else! They would probably be so confused! We are now "Sunday LOVE egg and cheese" people.

Many thanks to Justine who stumbled upon us at LOVE Park and gave a $20 donation. We look forward too her involvement in the near future.

Thank you to all who participated this week in whatever capacity you were able. While there is no such thing as a perfect circle, the way we hold hands with folks in our community gets us pretty close. I see no gaps, no one left out. It's a beautiful thing. Thank you for being a part of it! The volunteers are EVERYTHING.

Much LOVE. xoxo

Week #126

Jun 04, 2017

Sunday LOVE was a lovely surprise this week. I was fully expecting chaos with the book bag give away, but the volunteers were so awesome and all flowed smoothly. Well, maybe one little issue, but it was squashed. I was upset that one of our youth volunteers got scared, though. But Ava is tough and bounced right back.

The food was a massive hit this week. Thank you to Sorrell Daouphars for making a wonderful menu for this month. We served about 125 meals at LOVE Park and an additional 60 in Kensington. Thank you to Meghan Wright for the egg and cheese sammies! 

The menu: BBQ Pulled Chicken sammies, pasta salad, cookies, bananas, and water. So many people approached me to tell me how good everything was. One guest said he needs that recipe! 

Many thanks to our cooks and food contributors: Jocelyn Craighead, Kris Gold, Margaret Rom, Erica Alimario, Wendy Cooper, Meredith Cleary, Kim Maffei, Robin Berardine, Colleen Daniel, Shannon Dougherty, Lindsey McCahill, and Carol Pasquarello.

Many thanks to our amazing kitchen volunteers: Margaret Rom, Erica Alimario, Linda Giminez, and Andy Ungaro.

Much gratitude to our LOVE paparazzi: Aino Assmus and Alison Woodward Kelly. Aino's dad who is visiting from Germany also jumped in on the food prep line!

A special thanks to Gerd Diewald for serving in Kensington. Gerd said the food went in about 20 minutes but the need for water was HUGE. So please, drop those case of water to us. We never have enough!

And of course, thanks to our onsite volunteers: Ger Ronan, Heather Symecko and Ava, Andy Ungaro, Linda Giminez, Lori Judge, Margaret Rom, and Erica Alimario.

Thank you to Soozung Rankin for TONS of toilet paper and bedding. We were just asked the week before by one of our guests, who now has a home, for sheets. How cool that some brand new ones turned up right on time? Lori was super grateful. An overall thank you to The Church of the Holy Trinity for being so amazing to us. Between the kitchen, the onsite volunteers, and just the general love and support, we truly feel blessed to have partnered with these beautiful people.

We brought so many backpacks out to LOVE Park and I am not really sure how many were distributed but my guess would be around 100. Each bag was filled with hygiene products. A million thanks to: Cori Majeska, Nell Bradley, Amy Severin, and Mimi Murphy for helping to put those together. And of course, thanks to all who contributed to the backpack drive and/or bought hygiene products.

The bags will continue to be distributed in the next couple of weeks, primarily in Kensington. I gave some out yesterday in Kensington and people were so grateful. To not have to carry your belongings in a trash bag is a thing of beauty. And just a general game-changer. It may be a little less obvious that people are struggling with homelessness which makes others perceive them differently. It's sad, but true.

We marked our guests hands with a Sharpie marker to prevent any double-dipping. I think this system worked far better than the ticket system we have used in the past. Honestly, I did not get involved in giving away backpacks because of the situations that have come up in the past with sleeping bags. I stood back and watched as the volunteers did it all, while smiling. Give aways stress me out when I know it is something they really need. I was so grateful to watch from the sidelines. They were much appreciated.

The vibe was good yesterday, for the most part. The weather was pleasant and folks were very chatty.

We are hearing more and more about the need for foot care in Kensington, as well as the need for first aid packages. Stay tuned, but this may be our next drive.

Also, last week, Sunday LOVE was awarded a $6000 grant (plus $2500 toward purchases at PhilAbundance) so that we can serve an additional 100 people INDOORS, at The Church of the Holy Trinity, starting in August. The duration of the grant is one year. We are very excited to partner with The Food Access Collaborative/ Meals and More Program. We will need tons of volunteers on Saturday and Sunday nights.We will keep you posted as we work out logistics and get closer to the start date. We will also have support services involved so that folks have access to the resources they need. It's all SO EXCITING! 

Thank you to all who helped out this week. And thank you to all of our supporters who helped us look good enough to get this grant! We were up against six other organizations, so I am feeling very proud of the LOVE community.

I know we typically see less folks in the summer in terms of volunteers. However, this is quite the opposite of the guests. Our numbers often double in the food line. So, if you find yourself sticking around for some summer weekends, please keep us in mind. It is only about a 20-30 minute commitment to come out and serve.

I love you all to bits and pieces! xoxo

Week #125

May 28, 2017

Sunday LOVE was a cake walk yesterday, thanks to our amazing volunteers. The weather was beautiful and those we served, thankful and joyous.We served 198 meals between LOVE Park and Kensington for the 2pm service. I then went out last night and served another 29 meals. We provided 81 bagged lunches to Angels in Motion and another 40 slices of pizza on Saturday night, thanks to Ramble Pizza. We provided The Last Stop with 18 bagged lunches for today.I served 24 egg and cheese sammies this morning in Kensington. So, we served somewhere in the ballpark of 400 meals this weekend. Sometimes I lose track of the numbers because serving has become this impulsive thing where I think I am going to sit down for ten minutes, but then realize there is food in the fridge and it would not be right to hold out when people are starving a mile away.

We served Sloppy Joe's, tater tots, sliced cucumbers and carrots, fruit cups, cookies/brownies, and water. We also served egg and cheese sammies in Kensington, thanks to Meghan Wright at The Abbaye. Nineteen pairs of Bombas socks and Gold Bond were distributed at Kensington and Somerset. Baseball caps and socks were distributed at LOVE Park, thanks to Soozung from The Church of the Holy Trinity.

We continue to be incredibly thankful to Holy Trinity Church for allowing us to use their kitchen. They are truly beautiful people and really go out of their way to accommodate us.

Thank you to our cooks and food contributors: Shannon Dougherty, Ellyn Dvorin, Jocelyn Craighead, Kathy Natale, Lindsey McCahill, Jennifer Siegel, Ryan Solimeo, Bill Derbyshire, Erica Lynn, Brian Maiolo, Meredith Cleary, Carol Pasquarello, and Tanya Dyke.

Much love to our kitchen volunteers: Meredith Cleary, Jennifer Siegel, Brian Maiolo, and Lindsey McCahill. What an awesome and incredibly efficient team!

Thank you to our onsite volunteers: Ger Ronan, Nia, Lori (once homeless, now helping us serve), Aino Assmus, and Gerd and Mia Diewald.

Lindsey McCahill also made two more plarn mats (made from grocery bags) to sleep on. These are truly amazing and she uses about 600 bags for each one. That being said, GIVE ME YOUR plastic shopping bags so we can turn them into mats! I gave one to Travis who said he would let me know how it worked out. I have one more to distribute. Folks love them but they are a bit bulky so some folks said it would be too much to carry. This may work for my people at the Emerald Street bridge as they are covered from the elements and have set up camp there.

Yesterday was smooth sailing. I knew the line would be long at LOVE because of the beautiful weather. We were short on volunteers but we made it work, as we always do. Special thanks to my girl, Nia, for handing out plasticware. And of course her grandfather, Slim, palmed me another $5. One of our volunteers has said he will match Slim's donations to LOVE at the end of the year. We will then figure out what he needs and take care of that for him. Slim is losing his hearing so I may speak to him about the possibility of hearing aids. He currently has $55 in his envelope. If he is agreeable to hearing aids, I may need some help with that. Maybe we can get them discounted???

Joyce, one of our volunteers asked me if I was gaining weight. So now you understand the level of comfort these folks feel with me! I took my low self-esteem to a kids birthday and ate pizza. I love that they are that comfortable with me. Truly.

The report from Kensington is that the egg and cheese sammies, along with the socks, disappeared at lightning speed. There is NEVER enough. Much LOVE to the Assmus/Diewald family for running that show.

As I mentioned above, I did serve again last night because we had an excess of rolls and I had jumbo cans of tuna so on it went…

Thank you to Tanya Dyke who randomly found us online and dropped off brownies and women's care packages at the church. All was incredibly appreciated.

Much gratitude to Anthony Oriti for planting a garden for LOVE in the raised beds provided by the church so we can grow our own food. I am so excited for fresh veggies, especially after seeing how crazy people went over cucumbers and carrots yesterday in Kensington. If you would like to help out with watering, I will not turn you down! It's located on Master Street, behind the Crane Arts building.

We will be distributing new backpacks, filled with hygiene products, on June 4. There is a sign up for products we need at sundaylove.org. Please message me for address if you would like to send directly.

Also, we are trying to plan a plan party so Lindsey can instruct others how to crochet the mats. This can happen on a Sunday while we use the kitchen, as there is plenty of space. Please contact me, if interested.

Thank you to all who participated this week. We are on a roll of serving 400 or more meals a weekend. That is a beautiful thing. I am so grateful to each and every one of you for the LOVE.

Please don't ever stop! xoxo

Week #124

May 21, 2017

Sunday LOVE was a smooth operator this weekend in the kitchen. The weather was perfect and the volunteers plentiful. All of our bases were covered and we served 206 meals total between Kensington and LOVE Park. The menu included: baked ziti, salad, garlic bread, cookies/brownies,cupcakes, bananas, and water. And of course, egg sammies for Kensington.

Lots of good stuff to come about this week, but first, the gratitude. A special shout out to Brooke Honeyford-White, Ian White, Stephen Shea, and Justin Heulitt for making 200 cupcakes for Mothers Day. They were so appreciated and we are so grateful for the contribution. Such an amazing gesture.

Thank you to our cooks and food contributors: Donna Pironti, Jocelyn Craighead, Jo Buyske, Emily LaBree, Jennifer Siegel, Kris Gold, Lois Mongeluzi, Meredith Cleary, Carol Pasquarello, Shannon Dougherty, Georgia Burns, Kim Maffei, Mary Beth Brandt, and Meghan Wright.

Lots of LOVE to our prep team at the church: Georgia Burns, Meredith Cleary, and Stacie, Dave, and Kayla Pratt. These guys were a well-oiled machine and got food out so efficiently. I was touched to see a family involved together on the plating of the food. I think it was the perfect way to spend Mothers Day! I think Stacie thought so, too. Rock stars!

Thank you to our onsite volunteers: Melvin, Linda Giminez and Justin, Sorrell Daouphars, Georgia Burns, Erica Vanstone, Meredith Cleary, Jocelyn Craighead, Aino Assmus, and Mia Diewald.

I went to Kensington this week but all feedback I received at LOVE Park was positive. Sorrell made 100 bags of socks and Gold Bond to distribute to our guests. The socks were complements of our new partner, Bombas, who gifted us 500 pairs of socks two weeks ago. We have been giving them out in various spots. This often creates a mob scene at LOVE Park, but it still needs to happen. I heard folks were thrilled about cupcakes and socks. Who wouldn't be? (Seriously, two of my favorite things).

We were incredibly blessed to have our new partner, Distributing Dignity, come out to Kensington to hand out new bras and underwear, and feminine products to our guests. We served at Kensington and Somerset. Joanie and Rebecca, the amazing team behind this organization, were able to do their thing in helping others in a different environment. This is an area of active drug use, but the need for bras and underwear is no different than other area. They made a lot of women smile. They also gave out make-up.(It was sort of hilarious to watch us try to match these women with make-up when none of us ever wear it!)

I had some pretty intense conversations with the ladies I met. There is nothing but pure honesty out there and while it can be hard to hear, giving them the opportunity to talk is worth its weight in gold. 

I could go on a rant about the opioid epidemic, but our mission is food. LOVE, FOOD, and DIGNITY. All of these components were present yesterday and I am so grateful to Distributing Dignity for coming out to make these women feel like they should feel on a daily basis: LOVED.

Rebecca expressed that she wished they had a more private space to hand these items out. In the largest open air drug market in the country, I assured her this was the most innocent and appreciated thing out there. But damn, I loved that she even considered that. Distributing Dignity for the win!

There is so much that can be taken away from LOVE in such a short period of time. It's unreal. The women I met yesterday blew my doors off. The stories… there is an abundance of both sadness and beauty on the streets. If ever you think you need to learn a lesson about caring for others first, come to Kensington and meet some of these folks. I have never seen people in such dire need of medical attention or food in my life. And they will put someone else ahead of them, every damn time. I heard zero complaints yesterday. Think about that.

Thank you to all who made LOVE possible this week. 

We managed to crank out 351 meals between Saturday and Monday. This thing is on the move. And you, my friends, are the wheels. Please. Don't. Stop.

Much LOVE. xoxo

Week #123

May 14, 2017

Sunday LOVE was a joyous and efficient machine yesterday. Actually, LOVE has grown branches in the past few weeks and had also been making bagged lunches for another organization in Kensington on Saturdays. The absolute outpouring of support makes my heart skip a beat. It is so beautiful and uplifting.

All said and done, we served 456 meals in 4 locations over the weekend. The number of people we are serving is increasing weekly and I see no end. There is just NEVER enough. The feeling I get when someone walks up after all the food is gone creates a pit in my stomach. And quite often sends me back to the kitchen for another round. Why are people going hungry one mile from my home?

But, let's focus on what we were able to do, Thanks to all of the amazing people who donated such a surplus of food this weekend to make this all possible. Much LOVE to: Shannon Dougherty and Liz Pedersen at Cedar Point Bar and Kitchen for the massive amount of delicious leftovers from a wedding they catered, Meghan Wright from The Abbaye for the egg and cheese sammies, Nicole Hess, Joyce Schubert, Jocelyn Craighead, Annie Eustace, Brian Foedisch, Kathy Natale, Margaret Rom, Mary Beth Brandt, Jennifer Lorenzi, Barbara Kueny, and Megan Moran.

Thank you to a rock start kitchen staff. I was quite late to the church because of the Broad Street Run (traffic issues), but when I arrived, the volunteers had already started in the kitchen. We worked efficiently and got 231 meals out the door on time.Thank you to: Meredith Cleary, Jocelyn Craighead, Margaret Rom, and Nicole and Danielle Hess.

We served everything from chicken salad to meatloaf to fried chicken, risotto, collards, mashed potatoes, rhubarb, bananas, fruit cups, veggies…there was SO much food!

Thank you to Heather Symecko and Ava for making 100 bagged lunches on Saturday! 

Jocelyn headed to Kensington where she met up with Aino Assmus to distribute food. They went to The Last Stop and then to Kensington and Somerset. Aino reported that she got so many "bless you's" that she is good for a long time! She told me the new location has somewhat brought her back to the beginning when she started with LOVE: the emotions, the heartbreak. But she also said she feels welcome, and not afraid, at Somerset. When we truly open our eyes, there is pain. It comes with the territory of this work but the amount of beauty so often prevails to a point of managing the pain.

I would also like to add that Aino made a very generous donation to LOVE for her birthday. She donated for every birthday wish she'd received last week. Aino has a lot of friends! I am so grateful to know such a wonderful and selfless woman. She also distributed sandwiches in Kensington on her birthday. Talk about beautiful. When we realize that we have everything we could ever want in life, because it lives within us, giving becomes natural. If you can lift someone up with such a simple gesture, why wouldn't you?

LOVE Park was full of folks and our volunteers were amazing. We distributed all of the food in about 10 minutes. Thank you to: Melvin, Nicole and Danielle Hess, Ger Ronan, Margaret Rom, Sorrell Daouphars, Karyn and Colleen Kelly,and Virginia Friedman, 

The tunes were playing, the weather was agreeable, and smiles were a dime a dozen. I love catching up with our folks on the street and hearing about how they spent their last week. There are a lot of great stories. Everyone loved the food and were super appreciative. Except one guy who hates mayonnaise. While we have had this conversation before, I finally came up with a solution. I told him I would bring him a bagged lunch with PBJ and snacks next time we served anything with mayo. He loved the idea. Problem solved!

I also chatted with a guest I have known since the beginning. She had a place to live but her boyfriend physically assaulted her and fractured her ribs. She showed me the paperwork from the hospital and also the names and numbers of places she needs to go to get a restraining order, etc. She assured me she wasn't going back. I have watched this woman through addiction, pregnancy, and homelessness. I was really glad she showed up yesterday. I like that she knows we are a safe place for her and she trusts us.

Another woman was having a conversation with one of our volunteers and at the end of it, I heard her quote Jean-Paul Sartre. "Man is condemned to be free; because once thrown into the world, he is responsible for everything he does." I wish I had heard more of that conversation!

After LOVE, I decided to go another round because I had so much food left from the goods donated by Cedar Point. I took a bunch of meals over to Kensington and Somerset where the food disappeared in minutes. One man told me he hadn't had a hot meal in weeks. The amount of gratitude was a bit overwhelming. The things we take for granted are such a gift to someone who goes without.

A huge shout out to Bombas socks for their donation of 500 pairs os socks. I make packages of socks and foot powder to distribute in Kensington. we will do the same at LOVE Park next week. Again…the little things.

Thank you to those who donated clothing and shoes. I will distribute this week as there was no room in my car on Sunday for anything other than food. But please be assured that all will certainly go to good use.

A million thanks to our mystery donor who sent 40 pairs of sneakers and lightweight jackets. What an amazing gift. Many of the sneakers were distributed on Saturday. 

This community blows me away every week. The success of LOVE is a direct result of everyone doing a little. It amounts to a lot. I could not be more grateful.

Thank you to all who participated this week. this thing just keeps getting better! Much LOVE. xoxo

Week #122

May 07, 2017

Sunday LOVE had beautiful weather today and wonderful volunteers. This whole kitchen situation at The Church of Holy Trinity is a real game-changer. We are super grateful for their support of The Project.

We served 242 meals today between the two locations. We also got Meghan Wright's trademark egg and cheese sammies, (Thanks, Meegs! xoxo) We served 150 meals at LOVE and it took all of 15 minutes. There were a few people who showed up at 2:10 and the food was gone. 

We served: lasagna, garlic bread, fruit cups, cookies/brownies, bananas, and water. The food looked and smelled amazing today and many folks commented on how delicious the meal tasted. 

That being said, lets thank the cooks and food contributors: 

Meghan Wright, Amy Smith-Sweeney, Cia Cinaglia, Jo Buyske, Jocelyn Craighead, Lois Mongeluzi, Jennifer Siegel, Jennifer Stueve, Ellyn Dvorin, Colleen Daniel, Julia Thompson-Callio, Carol Pasquarello, and Shannon Dougherty. I love you, all!

Many thanks to the folks in the kitchen today: Jennifer Stueve, Meredith Cleary, Jocelyn Craighea