Sunday, February 21, 2010

Generous Winners

When Barry, Manna's food service manager, saw the barrel of cookies, he knew what he had to do... have a contest. He counted the cookies then posted a sign for all our guests: whoever guessed the number of cookies would receive a custom-prepared meal for two, plus the jar of cookies. One entry was allowed per dining session, and the competition was held for one week.

In the end, JT came the closest to the actual number (guessed within two of the 972 official count). And when it came time for JT to claim his prize, he asked for a bowl to share the cookies with everyone at the table. He also said that since he lived by himself, he only needed one meal, not two. JT's generosity really reflects the spirit of giving at Manna, be it from volunteers, staff or guests..

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Be My Turkey Valentine

Sarah, Annie and Paul were supposed to serve a meal at Manna on Saturday the 6th, but they were snowed out. So, to make up for the time they missed, they brought in Valentines goodie bags and flowers to go along with the Thanksgiving/Valentines food baskets that were distributed this past Friday.

In the past, Sarah made Rosary beads and sold them to benefit Manna. We are always inspired by what the young people in our community do to help care for people in need...

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Caring... but Calculating

As a nonprofit soup kitchen, it is natural that we are a caring organization. We welcome anyone who is hungry, and provide a safe place for people to come together and be fed. At the same time, we are very methodical in how we run our business. There is a budget in place; we never spend more than we take in. The surplus at the end of each year is invested conservatively, so that we have a guaranteed reserve in the event of an emergency.

When an individual or family asks for financial aid, we perform a thorough background check to validate the need. The checks are never paid to the individual, but to the landlord, utility company or health care provider. We even calculate our success rate of keeping people in their household (last year it was 94%).

In our partnerships, we align ourselves only with the best organizations in the community - agencies like the North Penn Boys & Girls Club, the Lamb Foundation, the North Penn YMCA, Keystone Opportunity Center, Laural House - those who have proven to make a positive impact on the people they serve. By working with and learning from our partners, we improve our operating methods.

We are indeed very calculating... because we care.