About 150 people a day come through our doors 365 days a year, men and women of all races, all ages and even parents with young children. They come from many walks of life, some working their way back from personal setbacks, some struggling with disabilities and addictions and newcomers signing up for the first time.
Some are on disability or retirement benefits and trying to manager their limited finances. Many are veterans, wearing caps or shirts indicating their past service in the armed forces. A few come leaning on aluminum walkers for assistance and even occasionally in a wheelchair.
Often middle-aged or older, many of our clients are working at improving their lives. Some take classes at nearby St. Petersburg College’s Clearwater campus and at other schools. Several work intermittently at construction jobs, some do house painting and others do janitorial or maintenance work.
Volunteers have spruced up our chapel and made it a more inviting place for quiet time, spiritual reflection and prayer. Clients are invited to come to the chapel daily beginning at 7:30 a.m. Supporters also can buy a brick on the chapel wall, have it inscribed in memory of a loved one and underwrite the cost of about 100 meals with a tax-deductible donation of $100. Please let us know if you can help by buying a brick.
The summer seems to have passed very quickly. At least this year we had no construction or leaks. We also had good reliable air conditioning. Yes, we still have a lot of hot days left, but soon we will be enjoying the cooler days of fall. We thank all of you volunteers who stuck with us through the hot days of Florida. Our clients have needed all of us.
St. Vincent de Paul Soup Kitchen Executive Director Peter Scalia recently recognized the Phillies for their generous contributions at a pre-game tribute at Bright House Field. On hand for the tribute were(Left to Right): Peter Scalia; Phillies Clubhouse Assistant Joe Swanhart; Margaret Sandberg, wife of Phillies Manager Ryne Sandberg; Doris Gillick, wife of Phillies Senior Advisor Pat Gillick; Phillies President David Montgomery. The Phillies’ food donation helps to feed approximately 73,000 homeless and needy people in Clearwater. Mrs. Sandberg and Mrs. Gillick also volunteer their time every week during the Phillies Spring Training.
Community Kitchen and Resource Center begin in Pinellas Country in 1982. The SVdP Soup Kitchen has been at the Park St., Clearwater location since 2011. Focused on client self-sufficiency, serving breakfast to the poor and hungry.