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FALL 2019

A Home to Call Her Own It’s always a pleasure to see Charlise, who comes to the Soup Kitchen with a positive outlook despite the challenges she’s faced these last few years. We were especially happy to hear that she’s close to finding a new place to live, she has an interview for a full-time concierge job, and she’s hoping to help others from facing similar challenges. Charlise is a native New Yorker, who has lived in Brooklyn and Harlem. After 38 years in the same apartment, Charlise was unceremoniously thrown out so that the owners could raise the rent to market value. She’s been fearful of going to a shelter, and for the past several years she’s been staying with a friend or sleeping in Penn Station. She’s been spending money to purchase a passenger ticket that allows her to stay in the train station’s waiting

area, to ensure a cool, safe space if only for a few hours a night. It’s been challenging to hold down her part-time job, but she

up clothing when I need it. Rich and the social services staff have been really wonderful. I can’t say enough good things about them!” She’s eager to get back to a healthy regimen and a stable lifestyle after years of uncertainty, and she’ll always remember the Soup Kitchen staff for the kindness, generosity and friendly welcome she received.

has persevered and continues to work, and Charlise is grateful for the support she has found at Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen. “I have a place to sit and relax here, which is so important,” she told us. “I can receive my mail, and pick

“There were times when I wanted to give up, and a volunteer named Deborah would say, ‘It’s right around the corner. Good things are coming.’” We’re delighted to hear that things are starting to look up for Charlise, and at the same time – knowing the twists and turns that have come her way – we’re quick to add that as long as she can use help we’ll continue to be right here for her.

By The Numbers This Month:


pounds of NY State apples served

gallons of NY State dairy served


5,629 brown bag lunches distributed

backpacks filled with weekend meals





meals served

items of clothing distributed

haircuts and vouchers


hygiene products distributed

Dear Friends, Over the past year and a half, I’ve heard many stories from guests like Charlise, featured in our cover story, about how the Soup Kitchen has not only nourished them, but also strengthened their resilience and given them hope. With nearly 1.1 million New Yorkers struggling to put meals on their tables regularly, and city shelters filled to capacity, we’re keeping our doors wide open. Everyone is welcome, and we’re committed to integrating new programs that will help our guests navigate towards improved health, housing and jobs. Anthony Bourdain was right when he said, “You learn a lot about someone when you share a meal together.” You also learn how connected we all are. I invite you to join us for lunch – as a guest or as a volunteer – and experience our community and our programs firsthand. Here at Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen, we’re proud to be building on our 37 year tradition of bringing people of all faiths, races and backgrounds together for food and fellowship. There’s a seat at our table for everyone. Thank you.


Soup Kitchen recycling station

We’re composting, to complement the recycling we’d done for years, and since 2018 we’ve been serving as a neighborhood composting site. We’re diverting 94 tons of organic waste from landfills to compost and renewable energy annually. Thanks to students from the NYU Wagner Capstone Project for working with us on our Zero Waste Initiative.

Who Are Our Guests? 60% male 20% employed 40% have high school diploma or GED

The Rev. Dr. Anna S. Pearson

14% served in the military

A Sustainable Future

22% living in a shelter

Thanks to Stone Barn Center for Food and Agriculture and the High School for Environmental Studies for partnering with us a second year. Students volunteered in the Soup Kitchen and returned to prepare a meal from Greenmarket-rescued food.

22% living on the streets

Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen is important to me because… “When I need for a short time, for one week, usually at the end of the month. I have a place where there are people to share a good meal.” “It’s a loving, supportive, nonjudgmental, safe place. I love Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen. It feels like family.” “Me and my daughter rely on it for lunch and we think the food is excellent!”

“You have saved my life in different ways.”

Q+A with Volunteer Steve Turtell

Steve Turtell began volunteering four years ago, and he’s done just about every job in the Soup Kitchen except bussing tables. Previously, he served as Director of Public Programs for the Museum of the City of NY, the South Street Seaport Museum, and the NY Historical Society. A poet, Steve published a collection called Heroes and Householders in 2009. He started facilitating the Writers Workshop in 2017, and he’s looking for a co-facilitator when the program resumes in the fall. If you’re interested, please contact Steve at sturtell@gmail.com.

Q: What keeps you volunteering? A: The knowledge that I’m contributing in my own small way with work that is necessary and that helps many people.

watching people who have serious challenges in their life sit down with strangers and have a cordial meal.

Q: Are there Soup Kitchen stories that you will never forget? A: There are many and they’re all similar. Sometimes it’s a family visiting from Denmark or Sweden who want to do more than sightsee while they’re in NY, or a group of high school students from out of state. They’re all as impressed as I am by the operation. But what impresses me the most is

Q: Have you learned anything about hunger and homelessness? A: I’ve been aware of it, but the extent of it always surprises me – especially when I see people I know and whom I didn’t realize were struggling. Q: What would you say to someone thinking about volunteering? A: It’s more fun, and more rewarding, than you would guess.

We’ve Got Weekend Meals!


Guests and visitors to the Soup Kitchen are now greeted by our raised bed vegetable garden. We’ll have three harvests of leafy greens a year to fill the backpacks for families in our weekend meals program. If you’d like to volunteer, please contact Michael Ottley at mottley@ holyapostlesnyc.org. Thanks to United Way and Food Bank for NYC for supporting this new initiative.

Thanks to everyone who supported the Have Their Back(packs) fundraiser. We collected over $12,500, enough to fill more than 500 backpacks for city children and their families this summer.

Sunday Supper Join us for our newest weekend meal program, and help revitalize the tradition of family meals. Sunday Supper is held every third Sunday of the month from 2:00 – 4:00pm. The dinner is presented by Google, and also made possible thanks to Jamestown and West Side Community Fund.



Participate in the 8th annual Fast-A-Thon, on Giving Tuesday, and help us increase awareness about hunger in New York City and raise much needed funds. Check our website for more details.

meals served since 1982



Anniversary Mark your calendar for Friday evening, November 1st, to celebrate Church of the Holy Apostles’ milestone year. Visit holyapostlesnyc.org for info.

‘TIS THE SEASON Book your company’s fall and winter volunteer days now by contacting Zakkiyya Reece at (646) 998 - 6103 or zreece@holyapostlessoupkitchen.org. Dates are filling up quickly.

HARVEST TIME The honey harvested from our rooftop beehives yields honey for communion bread and it’s being sold to support our work in the Soup Kitchen. Contact Michael Ottley at mottley@ holyapostlessoupkitchen.org if you’d like to purchase a jar.

Become A Monthly Donor Monthly donors sustain our Soup Kitchen. Ron Thomas has been a Soup Kitchen donor for over 30 years (thank you, Ron!), and after we started this program he saw an opportunity to support our work in a new way. “Monthly donations help both HASK and me. A steady, reliable cash flow makes budgeting easier for HASK, and monthly donations spread out and automate my contributions, so I don’t need to remember to make a donation at the end of the year – when my own cash flow may get pinched.” By giving monthly like Ron, you’ll make a difference in the lives of many New Yorkers, and preserve our anti-hunger programs for years to come. For more info, contact Jane Van Ingen at (646) 998 - 6114 or jvaningen@holyapostlesnyc.org.

296 Ninth Avenue • New York, NY 10001 (212) 924 - 0167 www.holyapostlessoupkitchen.org

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Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen’s mission is to feed the hungry, comfort the afflicted, seek justice for the homeless, and provide a sense of hope and opportunity to those in need.

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Fall 2019  

Fall 2019