|Smiling faces from the kitchen of God’s Love We Deliver|
When I was in college, I loved volunteering. I spent Saturdays building houses with Habitat for Humanity and went by the local Headstart in between my classes at the College of Saint Rose in Albany. When it came time to graduate, I took my first job offer (didn’t even negotiate my salary, what a novice slip-up) at a nonprofit in Brooklyn.
Since then, I’ve had a few different jobs, but nothing compares to my current position at God’s Love We Deliver. I started last August as a Campaign Associate. My job is to help manage our expansion campaign, which aims to more than double the size of our current facility at the corner of Spring Street and Sixth Avenue, in SoHo.
God’s Love cooks and delivers nutritious, individually tailored meals for sick and hungry homebound individuals who are too ill to shop or cook for themselves. Our clients live with HIV/AIDS, cancer, multiple sclerosis, and other debilitating diseases. All of our services are provided at no charge to the client, regardless of income or status. Meals are designed to support each patient and their specific condition and treatment.
Originally a response to the AIDS epidemic in New York City, God’s Love was founded by Ganga Stone in 1985. She started cooking meals out of her Upper West Side kitchen and delivering them by bicycle to neighbors living with HIV/AIDS. Today, after a long road filled with dedication and vision, our staff and volunteers help serve over 4,300 clients, including their children and senior caregivers. More than 25 years after the first meal was served, we prepare and deliver over 20,000 meals each week — or more than one million meals per year.
Not only do we provide clients with holiday dinners, but we also deliver additional food for a friend or a relative, so that our clients don’t have to be alone on a holiday and no one has to grocery shop or cook. On those special days of the year, each delivery is neatly wrapped in a holiday bag decorated by student volunteers. It’s the special details like this that touch our clients’ hearts, while providing specific nutrition and satisfying their hunger.
|Sharing love and appreciation|
Twice a year we welcome celebrities and volunteers, many with their entire families, to help our staff at God’s Love. These Good Samaritans prep ingredients, and package soups, entrees, and desserts. Some bring their own cars and drive in holiday traffic all over New York City, delivering food to our clients.
|This is me with Heidi Klum, a good friend to God’s Love|
All year long, but especially during the holiday season, I try to reflect and be grateful. Here at God’s Love, we promote the very same philosophy. Our tireless staff and volunteers make me proud to work here, as we contribute an unwavering commitment to our community and clients, and often put others’ needs before our own.
Our holiday fundraising campaign is underway. We appreciate each and every donation, purchase and volunteer. Without your support, all that we do at God’s Love wouldn’t be possible.
As always, we love extra hearts and hands, so we’d love if you would volunteer with us. As a neighborhood minister once said to Ganga, “You’re not just delivering food… you’re delivering God’s love.”