Making Belonging Matter

“Community is much more than belonging to something; it’s about doing something together that makes belonging matter”. – Brian Solis

Yesterday we had a beautiful day for sharing. While the team set up between 2 and 4 pm the line continued to grow. Many of our friends arrive as early as 10 am on Sundays. It’s a social time to spend with friends, enjoy the weather and wait to enjoy time at StreetSoldiers. Before beginning the line was 95 long and reached the next corner.

We count several times during a Sunday. It’s a chance to get to say hi and helps tables like bread, produce, and hot food adjust how many items we can hand out to ensure everyone gets something. Our line backed filled three times as more joined us and we shared with 137. Our numbers have been growing and we are meeting new people every Sunday.

Thanks to donations to our GoFundMe we purchased trays of chicken tenders for 30 meals from our community partner, Home Style Pizza. Owner, Anthony donated 6 24-cut pizzas and trays of pasta. Our community partner, Mohawk Taproom & Grill donated 49 meals with chicken pasta with mushrooms. Along with our volunteer cooks we had 225 meals to share. We strive to be able to send everyone home with two meals. One for Sunday dinner, and one to help during the week, or to be shared with family at home.

Thanks to donations from The Schenectady Trading Company we had milk and produce to share. Using our donated account from the First Reformed Church of Schenectady we purchased fresh produce to share. Capital roots donated needed pasta sauce, maple syrup, and produce to share.

We struggled a bit in the heat with a lack of available shade for everyone. Thanks to donations we have drinks on hand, and we offer a drink table with cool water and lemonade at the head of the line. We have been keeping Propel on hand; an electrolyte additive to water to help combat dehydration. We put it to use yesterday and did our best to seat over heating friends and our favorite pups in shady spots. We shared 19 donated box fans to help friends stay cool at home.

We had a great day with lot of sunshine and great items to share. Thank you, Home Style and Mohawk taproom for donating meals this week and helping us ensure we had enough. Thank you to our volunteer cooks, those who take time to make sandwiches, and bake. Thank you to everyone who has made donations throughout the week to provide items to share- and thank you volunteer team for all you do💙🐼💙