DOROTHY DAY HOSPITALITY HOUSE
Feeding the hungry and sheltering the homeless in the Danbury CT area since 1982
 

Volunteers

Without volunteers, Dorothy Day House could not exist.   Here are some ways to help out:

Shelter volunteers -- help needed:

Shelter volunteers arrive at 9pm at the same time as the guests.   Assisted by a shelter coordinator, who is always present at the beginning of the evening, they check in guests and pass out linen and towels.   The shelter coordinator leaves around 10pm, at which time the lights go out.    Shelter volunteers do a load of guest laundry in a commercial washer, and can generally catch a few hours sleep (a bed is reserved for the volunteer, or they can sit up in a chair) prior to getting the guests up at 5:30.   Guests and volunteers leave shortly after 6am.   Shelter volunteers must be 21 years old.  Most are men (but women are welcome), and all volunteer no more than one night per month.   If interested, please contact Mike Murphy at email  nottheglasses@gmail.com or  phone 203-240-9276.

More info for prospective volunteers is in the attached shelter brochure. Click here to see brochure.

Kitchen volunteers:

Kitchen volunteers are organized into crews comprising 8 to 12 people.  There are approximately 20 crews, with most crews working one day a month (ex. 4th Thursday).   Volunteers arrive at the kitchen shortly after noon, and get to work preparing the meal, which is served from 3:15pm to 4:45pm   Cleanup is usually finished by 5:30pm.   No special culinary talents are required.

If you want to volunteer in the kitchen, you will be assigned to a crew and should be willing to make a commitment to work one day a month.  Right now, we have only a limited openings. For more information, please send an email to dorothydaydanbury@gmail.com ...Please be sure to state when you are available (ex 1st Tuesday) so we can direct you to the appropriate coordinator for that day.


Making sandwiches:

We provide sandwich bags for guests to take with them as they leave the afternoon meal. Generally the kitchen crews for the day make the sandwiches, but sandwich donations are particularly welcome. During the warmer months (April 15 through November 15 we need 60 meat sandwich bags containing two meat sandwiches and a dessert plus 25 additional peanut butter & jelly sandwiches.  During the colder months (November 15 through April 15) we need 80 meat sandwich bags plus 25 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

Many groups have recently expressed an interest in making sandwiches (thanks!!).   Almost all days are covered but occasionally we need sandwiches made for a partcular day on a one time basis.   If you are interested in making sandwiches, send an email to. dorothydaydanbury@gmail.com

Please do not bring in sandwiches unless you know that someone is expecting you to bring them.
 

Baked good donations pickups:

A number of local supermarkets have graciously made their expired baked goods available to us, but we use volunteers to pick up donations and deliver them to Spring Street.

Currently we do not neeed volunteers to pick up baked goods pickups.


Shelter from the cold volunteers:

During the winter months (Nov 15 through April 15), we run a program at St James AME Church (William St in Danbury)  from 6 to 8:30pm to give guests a place to get out of the cold for a few hours until the shelters are open.  Volunteers open up the kitchen, serve hot drinks (and leftover food, at their discretion) and do a quick cleanup. Generally two or three volunteers are needed. Volunteers generally come a specific day of the week (ex. Wednesdays, every other Wednesday).   We will be recruiting volunteers in Fall 2015.

Overflow shelter (winter months):

During the winter, the First Congregational Church of Danbury hosts an overflow shelter in Pilgrim Hall. Volunteers are needed to spend the night.   For more information, call Kathy Bardes at 203-470-8825.   Kathy is looking for someone to help her with scheduling overflow shelter volunteers.  Please call her if you can help out.

Monthly general cleaning:

Although it is the responsibility of each kitchen group to leave the kitchen clean prior to departing, a group of especially dedicated volunteers meets the second Saturday (note this used to be the first Saturday) of each month at 9am in the kitchen for some serious in-depth cleaning   The group cleans the walls, shelving, fans, refrigerators, etc.  If you would like to help out on a Saturday, please call Joe Simons at 203-482-6359 to make sure the group is meeting.

Morning Glory Breakfast Program:

Catholic Charities runs a breakfast program at the kitchen every day from 6:30am to 9am.  Additional volunteers are needed -- if you can help, please call Sierra at 203-349-2428.

Dorothy Day House Tours

If you are stopping by Dorothy Day House and would like to see the kitchen, donation storage area and shelter, please call Betty Ballard (743-7368). If she is available, Betty will be glad to show you or your group our facilities and explain more about our work..


Ideas for elementary and high school aged children:

Here are some things you can do to help out at Dorothy Day House:

1) Conduct a food drive.   See the "wishlist" on our for ideas
2) Make sandwiches --  see above
3) Have a bake sale or other event to collect money

More volunteer opportunities for young people ages 11-18 can be found through the Youth Volunteer Corp of Western CT.   This is a service of the Volunter Center of United Way of Western CT.   Call 203-797-1154 or www.volunteerdanbury.org


"Do not neglect to show hospitality, for by that means some have entertained angels without knowing it" - Hebrews 13:1-2


Dorothy Day Hospitality House
11 Spring Street, Danbury CT
Mailing Address: PO Box 922 Danbury CT 06813-0922
Tel:  (203) 743-7988
E-mail: webmaster@dorothydaydanbury.org



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