Luther Place Shelter for homeless women closed in August. WES had been a long-time provider of dinner service to the residents each second Saturday.
Our new food support to homeless women is still second Saturdays, 6:45 – 8:00 pm., now at the Patricia Handy Place located at 810 5th Street, NW, Washington, DC. We are assigned the third floor, serving anywhere from @30 – 60 women.
We no longer prepare food; DC Central Kitchen provides the food. Two volunteers are needed to serve the food, Volunteers must be at least 14 years old. Please note that teens can receive community service hours for their service.
Our commitment began in October. We need two volunteers for the following dates. I’m especially interested in securing volunteers for Nov. through Feb.as they are so near. Of course, it would be great to get all the dates secured.
January 12, 2019
I volunteered on October 10. Here’s what you can expect:
Easy access to the shelter. It’s within walking distance of three Metro stations (Gallery Place, Convention Center and Metro Center — Gallery Place is closest, about 5 minutes from the Chinatown exit). The shelter is near 5th and H. Bus service is also available. I drove and parking was not difficult. There’s street parking and parking lots are close by.
Comfortable setting/Appreciative women. The dinner service occurs in a setting similar to Luther Place. Dinner is served in a community room with small tables. The women were friendly; some engaged in conversation; some didn’t. All were pleasant. My daughter went with me and one woman talked to her extensively, showing and discussing her artwork on the walls.
Safe setting. It is a secure building. Security guards let you in and will take you to the floor. I had a pleasant conversation with volunteers from another congregation who were serving on the 1st and 2nd floors. They had been doing this for a while. One of them was a teen.
Friendly, helpful staff. Once on the third floor, the staff on duty will show you what to do. You put on gloves, pull the food from the refrigerator or warmer, and set it on the counter to serve. The staff will give you the timing for seconds, and when the food becomes self-service (around 7:30).
We were able to leave around 7:30/7:40.
The women were all ages (most appeared to be middle-aged/older), all race/ethnicities, a couple with significant, visible health issues (e.g., on walker).
We’re putting up information on WES’ website about Patricia Handy Place and about homeless women in DC.
Thanks for your consideration. I trust we’re able to continue this much-needed assistance.
Feel free to contact me if you have questions.
More information about the Shelter and how we’ve been asked to help can be found here: http://ethicalsociety.org/justice/luther-place/