Jul 22, 2019

With Gratitude

BB&T volunteers serving lunch
BB&T volunteers serving lunch

As the new Executive Director of Shepherd’s Table, I want to personally thank you for your generous contribution to our cause of alleviating hunger for our homeless community in Montgomery County.

Thanks in no small part to your gift, we have been able to serve 58,878 meals during the first half of the year to over 1,100 people. In addition, we have served hundreds of people in need of clothing, eye care, legal advice, mail services and other vital social services.

Having had the opportunity to serve meal guests in the kitchen since coming on board, I’ve been amazed at the level of professionalism and efficiency from our staff and volunteers. I’ve also been moved by the expressions of gratitude from our guests. The smoothness of the operation and the immediate impact of the work is truly something to behold.

John F. Kennedy once made the following statement regarding hunger in the United States, “We have the ability, as members of the human race, we have the means, we have the capacity to eliminate hunger from the face of the earth in our lifetime. We only need the will.”

Thanks to you, we have not only the will to alleviate hunger, but more importantly, we have the way in Montgomery County. As such, we serve as an example for other communities across the country committed to ensuring that no one goes to bed hungry and hopeless. 

Apr 23, 2019

A warm welcome to spring

Thank you so much for your gifts in support of our meal program!

We are excited for the warmer weather, and hope the Spring season is treating you well! Spring is special, as it leads into summer, when we receive fresh produce in abundance from our partners in the farmers markets and local farms. From the Silver Spring Farner's market, Takoma Park farmer's market, Dutch County Farmer's Market, and other donors, we are lucky to receive lots of great greens and veggies and fruits that get served every day!

Last week, our Chef, who is always looking for tasty ways to cook and serve veggies, made an incredible dish: warm chickpeas with caramelized onions, peppers, spinach, sun-dried tomatoes, and lemon. It tasted as wonderful as it looked, and our meal guests raved about it on their way out of the dining room.

Our Chefs, well trained professionals, are constantly finding ways to be more creative with the donations we receive. As they cook meals for a very vulnerable population, they balance the nutritional value of their meals with the taste and visual appeal of what they serve. The quality of the food and community in the dining room brings returning meal guests who are experiencing hunger and food insecurity. Many will travel far distances to make it here for breakfast or lunch or dinner. We take great pride in what we serve, and are thrilled that our meal guests agree. 

Our meal program staff are also paying attention to the special dietary needs of guests with diabetes or heart-related ailments, and working with a dietician to create appropriate meal plans. In this first quarter of 2019, we have served 31,694 meals, which is slightly higher than the same period last year.

As we look for ways to strengthen our program, we are grateful for YOU, for supporting this vital program that saves lives and brings smiles every day!

Jan 24, 2019

A Year of Blessings

Victor being served by Sister Anne
Victor being served by Sister Anne

At Shepherd’s Table we experienced so many blessings in 2018. You are one of our amazing blessings. Your gift speaks volumes about your huge heart and your generous spirit. We thank you!

While the number of folks experiencing homelessness in Montgomery County has decreased, the number of people seeking assistance through our meal program and other vital services has remained steady. Through your continued generosity, Shepherd’s Table has remained faithful to its mission begun in 1983. This December 16th, we marked the beginning of our 36th year of service.

As I look back over the year, I am reminded of many poignant experiences that touched my heart and the hearts of all of our staff.

  • Seeing the joy of a family with two small children who received housing that they “really like and are so happy about”. The family continues to access meals at the Table. We are delighted to watch the “growth” of parents and children.
  • Attending memorial services for several our clients and meal guests, and hearing the profound effect each one of them had on all of us.
  • Thrilled to see our Chefs embrace a new, heart-healthy, diabetic friendly, and culturally sensitive menu, and even happier to see our meal guests enjoying the meals.
  • Smiling thinking about our volunteers as they embraced the new Volunteer Hub, giving volunteers the opportunity to sign in online which allow us to have a more accurate count of volunteers and to ensure shifts are filled.
  • Saying good bye to John Eckenrode, our Resource Center Director as he retired, and promoting Evert Vargas to this position.
  • Welcoming new staff members: Carmen Garcia, Gary Bullock, Roberto Maraville, Rob Savoy, Iliana Umanzor, and Arvid Miller.

In 2019, we will: continue to serve with respect and compassion, commit to never miss a meal to support our clients and meal guests as they move toward housing and self-sufficiency!

We will put a big dent in the number of people who are food insecure by offering healthy meals. We will continue to change lives through the combined efforts of donors, volunteers and staff. We will do all this together!

Thank YOU for your continued support and partnership in our 36th year of service!

Much joy in the New Year,

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