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SVC’s Community Meal Program to return

by Public Relations | October 05, 2022

LATROBE, PA – Saint Vincent College will once again host its Community Meals, starting Saturday, October 8. The program has been on temporary hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Saint Vincent’s Office of Service Learning & Community Engagement started the Community Meal program in August 2009 when it was discovered there were few opportunities for people to eat a free, prepared meal in the Latrobe and Greensburg communities. Unlike an urban area thatmay have multiple soup kitchens serving one or two meals a day every day of the week, smallercommunities like Latrobe and Greensburg tend to only have a few churches and other organizations serving meals, and they may not be able to serve those meals every day. However, there is still a great need for food ministry and outreach. 

Until its pause in February 2020, the Community Meal was held on the second Saturday of every month and was offered to anyone in the Greater Latrobe area who would like to come. The program has served individuals of all ages and walks of life: some enjoy a chance to be out of their house and to share a meal with another person, while some come from the Union Mission or have recently left a shelter. Others hear of the Community Meal through the Food Bank, Headstart, or other such programs, like Faith in Action. 

Jody Marsh, Director of Global and Community Engagement, is passionate about food ministry and outreach and is excited to bring the program back. Due to the growing number of elderly in the area, we wanted to target those who would benefit from a prepared meal, are on a fixed income, and who are in need of company and social interactions,” she said.

The Community Meal is designed to be a unique and friendly experience. Upon arrival, student volunteers serve guests and dine with them in a family style setting. After years of success with the Community Meal, there are many guests who attend on a regular basis.

The meal had become a success because of the family, friends, student volunteers and guests.Cooking involves preparing a main course, salad, side dishes, bread and dessert. Groups are encouraged to visit the Food Bank in Delmont to pick up what they might need—lettuce, desserts, etc. With an average of over 50 guests attending each meal in the past, SVC is excited to return to this long-standing tradition. Partners for this event include the Saint Vincent Basilica, Holy Family Parishes, Latrobe Presbyterian, Faith in Action and local Boy Scouts who dedicate their Saturday morning to share time and talents with the members of the community, providing a healthy, well-balanced meal.

Any student, club, team or class at SVC is invited to volunteer. Volunteers from Katie Boosel’sBiblical Foundations Course will be present for October’s Community Meal, and Dr. Tim Kelly’s honors students will volunteer in November.

For more information, contact Jody Marsh at 724-805-2350 or