San Francisco is an integral part of Butchershop. We don’t just work here; we live here, too. So it’s important to us to give back to the community that has supported our growth and creativity.
A few of us Butchershoppers headed over to Glide Memorial as part of our volunteer program, started by Candice Nguyen, project manager, and Camille Gulick, office manager. We served lunch to the people who utilize Glide’s Daily Free Meals Program including those who are homeless, or near homeless; those whose lives have been impacted by the use of drugs, alcohol and/or mental illness; elders; and low-income families or individuals.
The hardworking and dedicated folks at Glide, a group of 160 employees and 85 volunteers, are “a radically inclusive, just and loving community mobilized to alleviate suffering and break the cycles of poverty and marginalization.” The positive, friendly and welcoming atmosphere was remarkable to be part of, filling us with a drive to continue volunteering when and where we can.
The operations at Glide are very efficient — running a variety of programs simultaneously. On average 800 hot lunches are served each day, with a total of around 2,400 meals daily including breakfast, lunch, dinner and bag lunches. They serve roughly 800,000 meals a year, which costs around $4.2 million for the food service alone. Amar Al Hosani, Volunteer Program Coordinator, shared several other staggering statistics and insights with us. For one, 60% of the homeless population in San Francisco resides in the Tenderloin. And the average income of those who come to Glide? Under $800 per month.
Like many of those who volunteer at Glide, we came to help out around the holidays in the giving spirit of the season. But after learning that the organization struggles to rally volunteers throughout the rest of the year, we’ve resolved to make it a regular routine. Which shouldn’t be difficult, given how simple the process of signing up is and the overwhelming positivity we experienced. Don’t be afraid to join us.
If you’re interested in volunteering at Glide, you can find more information here.