Creative Ministry Through COVID-19 Outbreak – Coalition for the Homeless
The Coalition for the Homeless leaders has been getting creative as the Coalition staff vows to keep their 500+ residents safe during the “Stay-at-Home” orders. Committed to supplying a healthy and hearty meal for the families, volunteer St. Luker Beth Ely has been exploring new ways to resource the ingredients. The Coalition staff was happy to prepare the food in their kitchen so that both their residents and our St. Luke’s volunteers are not spreading the virus.
Beth was at Publix when she noticed they had bone-in frozen turkey breast for $1 per pound. She decided to act while it was available to pull together a jambalaya dinner for the Coalition, which is a shelter favorite and one of our most economical meals. She also purchased small red beans to stretch the protein and budget as they add dietary fiber and help the environment by eating less meat. The St. Luke’s volunteers normally buy chicken, but the turkey was less costly and more importantly, available. Beth feels much better knowing that St. Luke’s is supplying a healthy and delicious dinner. St. Luke’s volunteers have helped the Coalition staff during this crisis by doing the shopping and consolidating both the men’s and women’s shelters into one meal preparation for one night.
Fresh items were not available through the normal resources and St. Luker Beth Ely wants the best product she can get! St. Lukers Reeta and Pat Casey came to the rescue! They were looking for a place to donate salad makings, homemade dressings and an assortment of high-quality vegetables with sauces from their restaurant; Sam Sneads in Maitland. Beth arranged for pick-up of these products and the Coalition was thrilled to receive them.
St. Luke’s volunteers also picked up a pallet and a half of produce using three SUV’s and FreshPoint has made three deliveries (amounting to ten pallets) to the Coalition campus. Among the food that was delivered included fruit, vegetables, yogurt, sour cream and heavy cream for sauces. On top of all of that, FreshPoint twice provided unexpected bonuses of ten cases of spices and seasoning blends. The Coalition kitchen staff was thrilled to receive these as they usually only have salt and pepper, and maybe garlic.
Beth Ely has not stopped there! The Coalition wants to provide homemade masks for its residents since they are living in close quarters. St. Lukers stepped right in and are joining in the cause of sewing these life-saving masks. The UMW has recruited volunteers, resources for designs, creative ways to replace hard-to-find elastic, and the Hearts to Hands group is hard at work.
Well done team! It is not volunteering as usual, but our families are beautifully and lovingly cared for at this challenging time.