Changes and more changes—they just keep coming, as First Church Homeless Ministries navigates the Delta landscape. In August, the City of Cambridge made a decision to extend several of the programs we have been administering. The city-wide restaurant meal program will keep going until October 3, distributing meals made by local restaurants to neighbors in need. This allows us to continue serving restaurant entrees to neighbors in need on Wednesday evenings and at the Friday Café through the end of September.
The city also extended its coverage of our expanded Shelter hours. The Shelter will continue to operate around the clock through December 31, then resume its usual overnight schedule. The shower program (now relocated to University Lutheran Church) will likewise continue until December 31 (Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.).
Meanwhile, the Friday Café celebrated a grand (hybrid) Relaunch on September 10. With home-cooked food dropped off by neighbors, and (masked, vaxxed) volunteers in the kitchen and at serving stations in the Hall, it felt like old times… only without tables or indoor seating. We continue to host the community on the front lawn, only with takeout containers instead of bag lunches, and casseroles, side dishes, salads, dessert, and coffee instead of sandwiches and juice. After 18 months of pandemic meals, our guests are thrilled to be eating lasagna again! It feels great to welcome more volunteers back, and we look forward to the day when the whole community can once again sit down and share a meal together. The Café welcomes volunteer cooks and in-person helpers! Please visit our page to sign up.