Update: The Gathering on State

First Saturday Cook Group preparing the Saturday Lunch at State Street

First Saturday Cook Group preparing the Saturday Lunch at State Street

Numbers served at the State Street location since our move in late March:  March 26 – October 31, 2017
•    Breakfast    30,611
•    Saturday Lunch    5,358
•    TOTAL        35,969

•    Larger dining hall space; easier to move around
•    Parking on site
•    No stairs; wonderful for those in wheel chairs who have difficulty walking
•    No stairs; wonderful for deliveries
•    Stable Saturday Cooks and Coordinators; slowly getting to know where things are and how things work in a new environment
•    Stable onsite Breakfast staff (Nicole and Pat) and stable management staff (Angela) with good communication skills, passion for their work, and willingness to work out issues with our host

•    Due to the larger footprint (inside and outside) we found it necessary to double our Breakfast security from one guard to two  
•    Again, due to the larger dining hall, we quickly found we needed more volunteers than at the St. James location; summer was extremely challenging
•    We have one quarter of the storage space we had at St. James for dry and cold storage
•    Because we share the kitchen and dining hall space with our landlords - St. Ben’s Community Meal - requiring the moving of small appliances and supplies in and out of dining hall and kitchen on a daily basis
•    Little to no privacy is available for our collaborative services

One additional blessing was the financial success of our Capital Campaign.  It has given us the ability to add the additional security guard and to purchase items that relieve the stress on storage space.  Thanks to all of you who gave to the Capital Campaign, and to those of you who have volunteered at the new location.  We remain grateful for your compassion, dedication and joy.


The Gathering’s 25+ Years Saturday Lunch Leadership Team

This year’s winner of the Nonprofit Center’s 2016 Inspire by Example Team Award is The Gathering’s 25+ Years Saturday Lunch Leadership Team.  These Gathering volunteers have consistently, for 25 years or more, cooked or coordinated the meal at one of our Saturday Lunch sites on at least a monthly basis.  Leadership volunteers perform jobs that would otherwise be done by paid staff.
The 25+ Saturday Lunch Leadership Team includes:
Four Saturday Cooking Crews:                                                                                                       St. Anne’s                                                                                                                                           King Solomon’s/Progressive Baptist                                                                                                  Bay Leaf Bruisers
 All Saints Cathedral  
                                                                                                     Between the four of them, these volunteer crews have cooked over 1,000 times – nearly 3 years of Saturdays; an estimated 204,800 meals; 3,200 hours of service.  All Gathering meals are cooked from scratch at each meal site.  The Gathering provides the equipment, supplies, food and menus.  The volunteer cooking crews provide the culinary expertise, creativity, commitment and passion.

Four Saturday Lunch Coordinators:                                                                                               Rick Thickens                                                                                                                                  Mary Thickens                                                                                                                                   Lisa Murray                                                                                                                                      Gregg Weirauch                                                                                                                          These coordinators have guided volunteer groups over 880 times – over 2 ½ years of Saturdays; 4,400 plus hours of service.  They are responsible for the entire meal program from set up to instructing and supervising the volunteer serving group to cleaning up and securing the meal site.  They are also responsible for creating and maintaining the atmosphere of hospitality essential to this work.

Here is the full list of all 2016 Inspire by Example Award winners:
Adult Award:  Jim Stanke; nominated by Milwaukee Habitat for Humanity
Youth Award:  J’Korevia Lawson; nominated by City on a Hill
Business Award:  GE Healthcare
Team Award:   25+ Years Saturday Lunch Leadership Team; nominated by The Gathering
Wile Volunteer Management Award:  Ana Kleppin; nominated by IndependenceFirst
Swigart Board Leadership Award:  Eric Isbister; nominated by Beyond Vision    
Award Winners will be recognized on April 7 at the Nonprofit Center’s 2016 Volunteer Celebration luncheon to be held at the Italian Community Center.