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A Message for Hunger Relief Volunteers

Dear Volunteers,

I am writing to provide you with an update on how Matt Talbot is responding to the spread of the coronavirus.  Last week I shared some of the things we are doing to increase sanitation around the facility and proper hand washing among all who are in the building. These efforts continue – in fact as a write this a volunteer just came by my office to sanitize my door handle and light switch!

The safety of our entire community including our guests, volunteers and staff is informing our choices as we move through these uncertain days together. With that in mind, we have made the difficult decision to ask our awesome volunteers to provide boxed “to-go” meals starting Monday, March 23rd. Congregate meals in the dining room are temporarily suspended.

Here’s how it will work.

Volunteer teams will prepare their meals as usual. As always, the kitchen will be available for your use. Rather than serve the meals on trays, food will be placed in “to-go” containers and handed out to guests. Matt Talbot can provide you with styrofoam “clam shell” boxes for your meals or you can provide your own container. We can also supply bottled water and plastic silverware. Please let me know at your earliest convenience if your plans to serve have changed.

During meal times, guests will be invited to enter the building through the front door (ten people at a time), wash hands, receive a “to-go” meal and then exit the facility through the door near Stanford’s office (on the garden side of the building).

Our meal time schedule will change slightly during the week to allow more time for this new system.  “To-go” meals will be available from 11 am – 1 pm and 5 pm – 6:30 pm, Monday – Friday.  On Saturday and Sunday boxed "to-go" meals will be available from 11:30 am – 12:30 pm and 5:30 pm – 6:30 pm.  Staff will be available on all days (including weekends) to assist with this new meal delivery system.

Because of the recommendation to limit gatherings to less than 10 people, the dining room will no longer be available as a day shelter. The facility will only be open Monday - Friday to guests coming for meals or using our laundry, shower and hygiene services by appointment. Matt Talbot’s housing & case management, street outreach, mail distribution, counseling and substance use evaluation services are critical and ongoing. Staff will be using modified means of communication to mitigate the risk of virus transmission. 

Of course we will continue to monitor the news related to the spread of the coronavirus and make necessary accommodations as needed. Please know that these modifications to services are temporary and we look forward to returning to “business as usual” once this crisis has passed.

Thank you for your service and for your compassion.

With Bold Hope,

Sydne Wirrick-Knox, Kitchen Manager