50Volunteers: Breaking Bread at Broad Street Ministry

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On Thursday, September 24th, some members of the 50onRed team donated a few hours of their morning to volunteering at Broad Street Ministry, a not-for-profit corporation that helps Philadelphians experiencing homelessness, food insecurity, abuse, and other forms of social trauma. In alignment with our company’s mission to give back to the community, Broad Street Ministry seemed like the perfect place to spend some time.

“I was surprised by how many people were there volunteering,” Software Engineer Scot Lawrie said about his experience. “They do a lot, considering they only have a few paid staff in attendance. I was impressed by how well organized they were getting all of us ‘new guys’ up to speed so we could actually help.”

While Broad Street Ministry runs a variety of programs throughout the week, our team participated in “Breaking Bread”, which is an indoor dining program that provides one meal a day, six days a week. Breaking Bread gives guests the opportunity to enjoy a thoughtfully-prepared meal in a safe, comforting environment. In addition to providing meals, Broad Street Ministry also offers a variety of other helpful services, such as handing out donated clothing and personal care items and providing on-site therapy. They even allow guests to list Broad Street Ministry as their primary residence so they can receive mail if they don’t have a home.


The 50onRed team was evenly split with two to three people working at a few of the major stations. Two of our employees, Ananth and Bob, were center stage (literally) as they helped prepare plates of food, while Marybeth helped distribute the meals to guests throughout the main dining hall. MaryKate was posted up in the Clothing Closet, helping fold guests’ selected clothing items and taking inventory. At the Personal Care Items station, Jaasu, Dan, and Scot were in charge of filling and giving out bags filled with personal care and toiletry items. Other available stations included the Menders table (mending clothing), the Therapeutic Arts table and the Nurses station.

By the end of the day, our team had helped serve over 360 guests, which, one regular volunteer speculated, was an all-time record.

“I greatly enjoyed my experience volunteering for the Broad Street Ministry,” CMS Developer Bob D’Errico said, reflecting on the day spent at BSM. “I was impressed with how organized everything was, and more importantly, was happy for the opportunity to give back to the community.”

To learn more about Broad Street Ministry and how you can volunteer or donate, visit broadstreetministry.org.

Interested in joining the 50onRed team? Check out our latest job openings