Spotlight on Giving – Wednesday Night Supper Club and Erin Sullivan
I have been volunteering with Wednesday Night Supper Club for about a decade. In commuting across Boston, I was moved to do my part by the vast display of income inequality and the sheer number of homeless people that I encountered daily. I originally selected this particular soup kitchen because it fit my schedule and was on my way home. I never expected to develop such a close and lasting relationship with the volunteers and guests there!
Wednesday Night Supper Club is an all-volunteer run, weekly soup kitchen near Boston Common. It feeds hot, nutritious meals to approximately 200 hungry guests per night. What makes it such a special place is that it seeks to treat everyone with respect and dignity. As such, all attendees are referred to as guests. It also serves restaurant-style – delivering meals to the table. Guests appreciate that they don’t have to navigate a cafeteria line while lugging their possessions.
Most evenings, you will find me out on the floor serving coffee and engaging our guests in conversation. Supper Club brings together a community of people from all walks of life, and thus provides a rare opportunity to meet people from diverse backgrounds. I also fill in where most needed, including plating food, washing dishes, and bussing tables.
In a cute and semi-related story, David, the evening security guard in our Boston office, never fails to cheer, “It’s Wednesday!” as I leave work and head off to Supper Club. He’s done it ever since I told him about my volunteering several years ago!
Wednesday Night Supper Club also started The Walk for Hunger. This 20-mile fundraising walk probably isn’t well-known outside of Massachusetts, but it’s a big event and the oldest pledge walk in the country. The fundraiser outgrew Supper Club and is now run by Project Bread.