This Week we Celebrate Homelessness Awareness Volunteerism!
For the week of Dec. 14, the New England Patriots Charitable Foundation will work in cooperation with the Massachusetts Coalition for the Homeless, Pine Street Inn and the Women’s Lunch Place to celebrate holiday giving volunteerism! Congratulations to our "Patriots Difference Maker of the Week"
Kevin Watson Volunteer, Pine Street Inn
Kevin is the Culinary Director at Legal Sea Foods, overseeing the day-to-day culinary opera¬tions of more than 10 restaurant locations. In 2007, Kevin attended a Legal Sea Foods Leadership Conference in New Orleans, where he spent time working with the victims of Hurricane Katrina. He returned to Boston inspired to find opportunities for his team to have a positive impact at home. In 2009, he began bringing teams from Legal Sea Foods to Pine Street Inn. Kevin and his team help us prepare and serve dinner to our shelter guests.
Kevin is also a fixture in Pine Street’s kitchen on Thanksgiving, arriving in the wee hours of the morning to help make sure the day is special for our guests. He also coordinates a team up to 30 Legal Sea Foods employees who provide indispensable support in the days leading up to Thanksgiving, helping us to prepare 3,000+ dinners served to men and women at shelter and housing location throughout Boston.
Finally, Kevin also helped develop the Visiting Chefs Series in 2010. Through the Visiting Chef Series, local chefs share their expertise and culinary journey with trainees in Pine Street Inn’s food services training program through interactive food demonstrations, tastings and questions. The goal of each Visiting Chef demonstration is to introduce the trainees to practical experiences, as well as offer insights on how to succeed and grow in the culinary and food services industry.
Massachusetts Coalition for the Homeless
The mission of the Massachusetts Coalition for the Homeless is to eradicate homelessness from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Their comprehensive approach allows them to address root causes of homelessness, achieve positive community impact, and ensure that services are provided to those in immediate need so that everyone has a place to call home. Why volunteer for the Massachusetts Coalition for the Homeless:
- They are a small organization that helps over 10,000 people in Massachusetts per year who are living in poverty.
- Without volunteers, the Massachusetts Coalition for the Homeless would not be able maintain inventory levels in their Furniture Bank for families and individuals in need.
- Without volunteers they would not be able to raise the funds needed to provide help for the many families and individuals the Coalition helps on an annual basis.
- Warehouse projects in Furniture Bank
- Drives including Toys, Books, Home goods, Linens, Teen Clothing, Coats
- Event support during major fundraising events.
To learn more about these volunteer opportunities, please visit http://mahomeless.org/contact-us/volunteer-opportunities
A special shout out to Melissa for her volunteer efforts at the Massachusetts Coalition for the Homeless!
Melissa Rouselle went to the Coalition two years ago after browsing their website. She realized that she wanted to help with their mission and upon meeting with them asked “what can I do to help?” She has committed so many hours in helping the nonprofit organization with their website, design and online communications over the past two years. You would think she was a paid consultant or employee as she has attended meetings, provided graphic design support, provided on-line support and is a financial contributor as well. Not only does she provide hours but she also encouraged her company, Appleseed’s, to donate their overstock linens to their Furniture Bank.
Pine Street Inn
Founded in 1969, Pine Street is the largest provider of permanent supportive housing, emergency shelter, job training and placement, and street outreach for homeless men and women in New England. Pine Street Inn welcomes more than 1,600 homeless individuals daily and 11,000 annually, providing short- and long-term solutions to end homelessness that help them to gain their highest level of independence. The Mission Of Pine Street Inn Is:
- To be a community of respect and hope for each guest it serves;
- To be a resource through which neighbors and friends can help to meet the basic needs of others; and
- To serve as a national leader in the fight to end homelessness.
More than 5,000 volunteers every year help Pine Street Inn provide shelter, housing and other crucial services to homeless men and women. Donations of time and talent help Pine Street continue the mission of ending homelessness. Volunteering at Pine Street Inn:
- Helps the more than 1,600 men and women Pine Street serves each day as they begin to rebuild their lives.
- Demonstrates your commitment to the well-being of those in need in the community.
- Offers insights into the challenges of homelessness and poverty in Boston and helps us all become part of the solution.
Pine Street relies on more than 40,000 hours of volunteer service each year to help in their mission of ending homelessness. Here are some ways volunteers can help Pine Street Inn while serving those in need in the community:
- Supper/Brunch Club: Provide the ingredients and prepare a healthy meal for tenants at one of their permanent houses. Come up with a creative meal and cook on-site for approximately 12 tenants. This is a great way to get to know Pine Street Inn’s tenants while sharing a delicious meal.
- Learn and Serve: This half-day group opportunity combines hands-on service with education on the issues of homelessness, poverty and Boston’s lack of affordable housing. Volunteers work in their busy kitchen alongside kitchen staff and food services job trainees to prepare food that will be served to guests and tenants that week. After the service, volunteers are given a guided tour of the Inn.
- Evening Meal Service: For just an hour and a half of your time, your group can provide those in need with a nutritious meal. Volunteers are needed to serve dinner every night at each of Pine Street’s shelter locations in Boston’s South End, Jamaica Plain and North Quincy.
- Innbassadors for Pine Street Inn: The Innbassadors are a group of Boston's emerging leaders who are committed to the mission of ending homelessness. The group organizes volunteer opportunities to help improve the lives of shelter guests and housing tenants, as well as fundraising and networking events to build support and awareness for Pine Street Inn.
For more information about their volunteer opportunities, visit www.pinestreetinn.org/volunteer
. You may also contact email@example.com
We thank Kevin, Nathan and all of the outstanding volunteers for their dedication to Pine Street Inn! Pine Street is lucky to have wonderful volunteers of all ages. Nine-year-old Nathan Green started volunteering at Pine Street Inn with his mother Yvonne Adams in July 2012. On Sunday morning, 2-3 time a month, Nathan and his mother make sandwiches that Pine Street’s Outreach vans distribute to men and women on the streets. They also serve brunch to about 100 women who stay at the Women’s Inn. During those brunches, the women get a special treat. Nathan and his mom bring in homemade banana muffins that they make using older bananas from the kitchen.
Nathan also helps at the holidays. He and his classmates decorated beautiful holiday placemats for each guest to have at their seat during Thanksgiving. Nathan still wants to do more, so he organizes an annual cereal drive for the Inn. For Nathan’s third cereal drive this spring he recruited his friend Ella. Together they collected 301 cereal boxes from their classmates, friends and family. Pine Street’s shelters use about 600 pounds of cereal each week, so Nathan’s cereal drive was a huge success in helping us meet one of their most urgent needs.
Women's Lunch Place
The mission of Women's Lunch Place (WLP) is to provide a safe, comfortable daytime shelter, nutritious food and services for women who are homeless or poor. WLP treats women with dignity and respect and fosters a community committed to meeting each woman's needs. Why volunteering is important for the Women’s Lunch Place:
- WLP believes no individual should have to be hungry or homeless.
- WLP believes all human beings should be treated with dignity and respect.
- WLP meets each woman where she is, and they base and adjust their services according to her needs.
- WLP offers their services in a gracious, comfortable and safe environment, offering both physical and emotional sustenance.
- WLP creates a community of understanding and acceptance among guests, staff, volunteers and board members.
For more information on all opportunities, volunteers can contact Lisa Brown firstname.lastname@example.org
or visit www.womenslunchplace.org
We thank Elizabeth, Helen and Mary for their generous support of women experiencing homelessness!
Elizabeth Boardman has been with the Women’s Lunch Place’s Advocacy team for the past seven years. She started out as a graduate school intern as she completed her MSW for social work. She did her graduate work part time while still working. She is now a LISW and holds a position at Genworth Financial where she helps people with Eldercare planning and other social work. She loved being at the WLP so much though that she plans her work week around their needs and has continued for the last six years to come to the WLP one day a week to see guests and offer her expertise as a social worker on a volunteer basis. This service is SO valuable
to WLP because they only have two full time social workers on staff and having an additional person once a week for such a consistent span of years is amazing for the staff and the
women they serve.
Helen Donovan volunteers every Saturday and makes blueberry pancakes for their guests, she teaches a writing course on Fridays each week at 11am, and often fills in for support staff as a support staff volunteer helping guests with a variety of needs as well as building relationships. Helen is essential to the volunteer team, is the most humble person you could meet and never wants any recognition for her services. She’s also one of the first people to offer her assistance when they are in need. In the past six years she’s assisted the staff and is always going above and beyond.
Mary Moscato volunteers in the Resource Center on Saturdays, helping women navigate computers, phones, the library, and more. She also heads up the Saturday volunteers and is the self-imposed leader of the team. She emails the volunteers monthly to set up the calendar for each month, she keeps track of their time away and helps to ensure they have sufficient coverage for all Saturday afternoons, which can be a challenge since weekends are when all social functions tend to happen. Mary works full time Monday through Friday but still spends her Saturdays with the women. She is amazing at assisting women and offering help to learn new skills on the computer, apply for jobs, study with women and so much more.
The Patriots Celebrate Volunteerism
The Celebrate Volunteerism initiative aims to share examples of dedicated volunteers, build awareness of the need for volunteering, identify and educate others about volunteer opportunities and inspire New Englanders to follow the Kraft family's example of becoming a lifelong volunteer.
Throughout the season, the Kraft family and New England Patriots Charitable Foundation will celebrate volunteers that work tirelessly to support children and families in need throughout the New England region, while also encouraging Patriots fans to get involved in their communities. From animals and arts to military and homelessness, the foundation will have different weekly focuses throughout the season. Each week, the Kraft family and foundation recognizes one outstanding volunteer as the "Patriots Difference Maker of the Week."
Fifteen outstanding volunteers will be named as a Patriots Difference Maker of the Week and are recognized at Patriots Community Tuesday events. During the players one day off, they can be found out in the community at a nonprofit organization based around the weekly theme. Current and former Patriots players will interact with children and families each week and present the Patriots Difference Maker of the Week with an award. Patriots cheerleaders, mascot Pat Patriot and families of Patriots players and coaches will also be actively involved in the Celebrate Volunteerism initiative throughout the season.
The Kraft family and foundation encourage all Patriots fans to join us! Celebrate Volunteerism activities include the opportunity for fans to pledge volunteer hours and submit photos of their own "Patriots Difference Maker" certificates. Patriots' fans from around the world can send along their photos that will be used on our website. Each week, the foundation will also post volunteer opportunities that are available with our partnering nonprofit organizations.
Be sure to check back here throughout the season for the most up to date information on the Celebrate Volunteerism initiative.
2014 Celebrate Volunteerism Weekly Schedule
To view the 2013 Celebrate Volunteerism initiative, click here