A menu is not a meal; no matter how delicious the description on the menu sounds; you have to taste the food to know the truth. To know the truth, you have to experience it, even though it takes a lifetime to reveal who you are, why you exist, and who you may become.
New and exuberant volunteers are tasting and experiencing OOTC, joining us weekly mainly in the form of McMaster students. Also, beginning next week and for the remainder of our program, nursing students will be experiencing OOTC by carrying out their community care volunteer work. We met this afternoon to discuss their goals which mainly will be to collect information from our guests through interviews. They hope to learn guests’ challenges and existence in the world of poverty. Please allow them to interview you as well and shadow your excellent examples of empathy and compassion. Their work will be shared with us and we hope to use their findings to better serve our guests. (They will wear nametags and the sub-line, “Nursing Student.”)
A huge Yasher Koach goes to Behrad who did a stunning job as our Coordinator of Volunteers tonight. We actually gave him a standing ovation; we had no choice there were no chairs to sit on anywhere! Seriously, Behrad has been a valued McMaster volunteer for many years. He already coordinates our weekly team of students by using Facebook and his following is as wonderful as he is. We are truly so fortunate.
If you are present at the dinner hour, you have known of our increasing numbers of guests, but we’re always prepared. At first, I must admit I lost a little sleep but now, no more negative anticipation, only positive assumption. We know we’ll have a crowd, deal with it. Last week, 140 guests, tonight 132. Marvelous minestrone soup (none left), meatloaf (27 kg-none left), pasta, hot veggies and salad, clementines. Thank you to the most caring, creative and kind cooks!
And each guest is so appreciative. Here are some of the accolades.
“You the ball.” I don’t know what that means, but I imagine we’ve made it to the SuperBowl of Soup(er)Kitchens.
“Stop spoiling us.”
“Did the sun just come out or did you smile?”
“That meal was sick.”
“One less sh*#ty meal I have to eat at the Sally Anne.”
“It’s not much…..” $5 from a guest who I hope knows that his kindness is uncountable.
“Your volunteers are so kind.”
You all do so much already so what else could I ask of you? Well, let me think! Got it. We could use some plastic grocery bags, winter boots would be nice. If you can shlep your empty soda cans and wine/liquor bottles to the church, JSB funds their childrens’ programs by the refunds and sale of cans. One more really important need: for my friend who, after 14 years of homelessness, has an apartment. Does anyone wish to donate a used folding bridge table and just 2 folding chairs? Please? I’ll pick it up asap.
Looking forward to seeing you next week, when the menu will read Lasagne but the meal will be the experience.
Cindy, now that the bj opening is over.....it is time.....u must set up a personal blog or an OOTC blog. I promise, u will get followers and we will read it. Pls at least consider the idea.....Andrea