About the Author: L.J. Krizner serves as an Education Program Specialist at the U.S. Diplomacy Center.
Have you ever cracked 50 dozen eggs at once – and then scrambled them? The State Department Young Professionals have!
Motivated State Department employees from State’s Young Professionals Group (YPro) generously offer their time, energy and cooking skills to Miriam's Kitchen, one of the soup kitchens in the District of Columbia.
Each month, YPro volunteers rise extra early to arrive at Miriam’s by 6:00 a.m. in time to crack eggs, make biscuits, fill the coffee pots and cereal bowls, and serve up to 250 guests. A dedicated group, YPro volunteers also participate in other service opportunities with Miriam’s Kitchen. YPro members collect cereal, clothes and books when needed. This year, YPro also gathered a team to "Walk for the Homeless" and volunteered at Miriam's annual gala event. The State Department's YPro has been privileged to maintain a relationship with Miriam’s Kitchen for five years.
Miriam’s Kitchen is centered on a breakfast program that provides delicious food and meets the nutritional needs of homeless individuals, particularly those who are the lowest functioning among the homeless population. Food is donated from local groceries, farmers’ markets and individuals, and is prepared each morning by volunteers. By providing food and relief from the elements, Miriam’s is able to attract a large number of guests. Because Miriam’s staff also includes skilled social workers, case managers, and volunteers, Miriam’s is able to develop individual relationships with its guest, so longer-term needs can be addressed.
This summer, President Obama is calling on all of us to serve in our communities, and there are many ways to get involved. Serve.gov is your online resource for not only finding volunteer opportunities in your community, but also creating your own.