24-Seven Ministry Helps Homeless in Seattle
Outreach and community service are "hip" at 24-Seven Ministry Center on the campus of Bellevue Community College. Once a month for more than a year, a group of 24-Seven volunteers help with food preparation at the Hunger Intervention Program in Seattle's Downtown Emergency Service Center shelter.
"Unlike other shelters or soup kitchens, HIP not only provides meals, but also makes an effort to provide healthy meals," says volunteer and 24-Seven member Stephanie Campbell, who helped assemble GORP packets and cut fresh fruit. "I'm pretty health-conscious so the experience is more rewarding since I know the people we're serving are getting food that's just as good, if not better than any of us could afford."
Many of the people who benefit from this program do not qualify for other shelter meals and/or cannot navigate up the many hills in Seattle where outdoor meals are provided. Many are wheelchair-bound, mobility-impaired, elderly, developmentally disabled, or drug- or alcohol-impaired.
Volunteering with HIP helps many people in the greater Seattle area who desperately need help and "even though we didn't actually serve the food, it was awesome being able to indirectly make a difference in the lives of others," says Campbell.
Explore the HIP service ministry at www.hungerintervention.org.