This Ministry continues to grow, both in numbers and impact on people’s lives. It’s much more than a meal – it’s a loving, caring, community of over 250 people who come together to share in friendship, prayer and support every week.
When guests come they enjoy sharing a smile, a hug or a friendly conversation with the people at the dinner. Friendships are forming every week when people come in the door and join together for a meal. Many connections carry over into the rest of the week, as people build important support networks outside of the dinner.
There is an amazing “volunteer” team of over 70 dedicated overseers that continue to devote themselves to serving and showing God’s love to the people in this community. This volunteer team was awarded the 2012 YMCA Group Peace Medal award, and in 2014 the Volunteer Halton Community Development Team Award as well as the Burlington Accessibility Award! One of our younger volunteers, Chad Buisman, received the 2013 Burlington Junior Citizen of the Year for his dedication and commitment and love that he has shared for over three years to many friends on Friday evenings.
A delicious free meal on Friday nights at 6pm
The Friday Night Community is a shared ministry, hosted at Wellington Square United Church and supported by many faith communities, organizations and friends in the community of Burlington. We welcome assistance from groups and individuals of all ages including teens and older children.
Who attends the dinners?
Our guests come from Burlington and Hamilton and are men, women and children who are looking for a community of friends and people to care. Some may be persons socially isolated by disability, and or poverty, as well as single parents and seniors.
How can I get involved with the dinners?
You can arrange to have a group come in to prepare, serve and clean up (approximately 8 people for each shift) or come on your own and join in the fun. We have two shifts for volunteering (prep from 4-6 pm and clean up from 6-8 pm). We also have a need for people to help serve the meal at 6:00 (must arrive by 5:30).
We are always in need of juice boxes and individually packaged lunch snack donations (fruit cups, apple sauce, pudding, cookies, granola bars, etc.), which we give out to the children who attend, to help in filling their lunches at school. Please consider doing a food drive at you school, office or place of worship to help us collect these much needed snacks.
Where does the food come from and who pays for it?
Our coordinators set the meal plan and buy the food based on what donations we have available. We do put out a ‘free will offering’ box at the dinners in the hopes that volunteers are able to donate to help cover some of the costs of the meals. We are thankful for food donations from Partnership West Food Bank and Refresh Foods. Monetary donations from various churches, small groups, and friends in the community are an integral part in making the dinners possible.
Ready to be part of this team? Want to know more?
Please call the church or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org