Red Storm Staff And Student-Athletes To Volunteer At St. John's Bread And Life

Volleyball players Yana Vavdiyuk and Kerri Johnson volunteered at last year's St. John's Bread and Life Thanksgiving event.

Nov. 26, 2013

QUEENS, N.Y. – In keeping with the Vincentian tradition and the spirit of giving during the Thanksgiving holiday season, St. John’s University staff members and Red Storm student-athletes will join more than 75 volunteers at the St. John’s Bread and Life facility in Brooklyn, N.Y., on Wednesday, Nov. 27, to serve meals and offer support to New Yorkers in need.

St. John’s Bread and Life will begin serving hot chocolate at 10 a.m. and continue its service into lunch for a traditional Thanksgiving meal.

NBC 4’s Bruce Beck and family, women’s basketball student-athletes Danaejah Grant and Selina Archer, as well as a strong contingent of approximately 10 Red Storm Athletics representatives will be on hand to offer their services.

“If it's the Wednesday before Thanksgiving you can count on the St. John's Athletics Department to be a presence at St. John’s Bread and Life,” said Associate Vice President for Athletics Kathleen Meehan. “Since the original soup kitchen began in the early 1980s, St. John's University athletes, administrators, staff and families have contributed their time and efforts to further the Vincentian Mission."

St. John’s Bread and Life chooses to host its Thanksgiving service the day before to kick-off the holiday season early and offer those in need added support and one more warm meal.

“From a tactical point of view, Thanksgiving is the one time in this country that it's not hard to find a meal,” said Executive Director of St. John’s Bread and Life Anthony Butler. “There are so many churches and community centers doing it that we do it the day before. It reminds people that this isn’t just one day a year. Folks need to know that there are hungry people the other 364 days a year.”

One in five adult New Yorkers – and one on four children – use some form of emergency food every day. Bread and Life is a nonprofit, nondenominational organization whose mission is feeding St. John’s most vulnerable neighbors, many of whom are among the working poor. Bread and Life provides more than 3,500 meals every day through its soup kitchen, mobile soup kitchen and food pantry. That translates to more than 800,000 meals a year to hungry New Yorkers.

Wednesday’s Thanksgiving event is expected to host an estimated 3,000 individuals.

“University students, student–athletes and staff members who help out at St. John's Bread and Life, especially at Thanksgiving, are embodying a concrete, practical and effective way of living out the mission of St. John's, a Catholic and Vincentian institution,” said Campus Minister for Athletics Fr. Richard Rock. “In our society, poor and homeless people are invisible people. People walk by them every day and ignore them. Serving at Bread and Life is more than just giving those people a meal. It is showing them total respect as a person. Wherever St. Vincent went he did good, and every time we help at St. John's Bread and Life we do good.”

For more information on Wednesday’s event or for media inquiries please contact Caitlin Conklin at cconklin@breadandlife.org or by calling 718-574-0058 ext. 139.

       

About St. John's Bread and Life

St. John's Bread and Life has been serving the New York City community since 1982. The facility serves 3,500 meals daily, and its Sponsor a Family program at Christmastime provides food, clothing and toys to more than 2,000 families and approximately 9,000 individuals. For more information or to make a contribution, please visit www.breadandlife.org.

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