November News

Well, if you’re like us, the retailers and merchandisers are pushing the holiday season on us way too fast! Time seems to slip by without hurrying through Halloween, Thanksgiving and beautiful fall in New England!  So at All Are Welcome, we’re going to try and keep time, rather than rush through it. Our friends at SHARE OUR STRENGTH had Hunger ACTION month in September, we declared October “Scare Away Hunger” month and now we’re into November!

Saturday, November 2nd we’ll be extending our Halloween festivities through our regular breakfast.  All the decorations will still be up and everyone who attends will get a little Halloween goody! Our breakfast special is Pumpkin Pancakes!

As we move through the month, we’re going to take a lesson from “mom’s cooking 101” and do some cleaning out of the freezer to make room for our Thanksgiving feast!

On November 23rd our hosts and sponsors, the Church of Our Saviour will be having their annual Fall Fair.  We’ll be serving breakfast as always, but with special hours – from 7AM – 9:30AM.  So for everyone who loves AAW breakfast, we are encouraging you to get up a little early!  And if you miss breakfast with us, the church is having all those great fair treats at bake tables, and serving a lunch with their event!

As the month ends, we’ll celebrate a traditional Thanksgiving Dinner on Thursday, November 29 at 1PM.  As all our meals, everyone is invited to attend.  Please share the news with friends and family.  As our mission is always hunger relief – this would be a fabulous opportunity for folks to share a full turkey dinner.  We are also really hoping to reach folks who may be alone for the holiday.  We’ve made a lot of friends over the year, and hope to share our warmth and community!

More news and updates for our November Plans will be on our Facebook Page.

Let’s Pretend

Halloween is the time to dress up, pretend to be someone else, and let ourselves get spooked a little by ghouls and goblins and witches and things.  So, a little let’s pretend on our mid-October blog.

You go to the grocery – load your cart with a week or even a month’s worth of supplies for your family.  Arriving at the checkout, you swipe your ATM card like you have countless times before and…nothing.  HUH? You also realize (too late) you have no cash or checkbook with you.   Go home… call the 800 number on your card and…Sorry, phone lines are down; Website? NOPE, one big 404 Error!  To top it off it’s a holiday weekend – you can’t go to the bank to fix this for 2 days! WHAT NOW? A little to bizarre to imagine?

It happened to SNAP recipients in 17 states this past Columbus Day weekend. For some – this was the first chance they’d had to shop in a month, maybe they had to find a ride from a friend, or spend funds on a bus ride that yielded nothing.  Still a little hard to grasp?

How about this…

You’re a single parent of a 2 & 4 year old.  You’re working an $18 / hour a day job, 40 hours per week, bringing home about $2300/month after taxes.  Doesn’t sound too bad, right? NOW… deduct $400 – health care; $900 – rent; $450 – utilities; $200 – auto expense; $850 – child care; $150 misc.  

So, if you do the math, looks like we’re about $650 in the hole – and we haven’t bought food or clothes yet!  So, let’s be fair, chances are you’re getting some child support for your kids – quick calculator says it should be around $900/month.  So let’s add that back in and we’re back up to $250/month on the plus side.  So while you’re wondering how to actually LIVE on $250 / month – you find out you qualify for food stamps (SNAP)…NOT welfare, just food assistance for the grand figure of $526/month – or $122 / week.

The founder and CEO of Panera Bread, Ron Shaich, recently role played this “fantasy” for real.  As part of the SNAP challenge, Ron spent a week living on $4.50 / day for food and beverages.  You can read about Ron’s experience’s here: http://www.cnn.com/2013/09/25/opinion/shaich-food-stamp-challenge/index.htm

Our $17/day for a family of 3 sounds like quite a bit compared to what Ron had.  But that’s still $17 – for 3 people, for 3 meals.   The next time you go to the grocery store  – watch your purchases closely. Consider what you bought, consider the price of those items, consider how long those purchases will last.  Did you spend more than $17?  

For too many people, that’s not pretend.  That’s reality – and recent legislation reversed an increase in food stamps effective November 1.  That family of 3 – instead of $526/month, it’s dropping to $497.  Food prices are increasing – Food assistance is dropping – Now that’s scary!

 

 

 

 

SCARE AWAY HUNGER this October

All Are Welcome Community Kitchen declares October is “SCARE AWAY HUNGER” month!

 ImageAll Are Welcome Community Kitchen, a donate-as-able cafe located at 60 Union Street, Middleboro will be using the Halloween season to raise awareness of the hunger problem in our area and have special features at the restaurant all month to  encourage members of our community to support one another through our donate-as-able meals.

 In addition to the standard fare of sandwiches and salads, the October menu at All Are Welcome will be full of fall favorites of soups, stews, and  homemade breads along with seasonal harvest specials using apples, cranberries and, of course pumpkin! 

 For the young, and young at heart, there will be pumpkin coloring pages, fall themed mini-art projects to complete while you wait, and the month long event will end with Halloween treat bags for all our guests on Thursday, October 31 and Saturday, November 2.

 Donate-as-able restaurants are a growing trend across the nation, encouraging folks with the means to dine out to donate amounts comparable (or more) to those charged at traditional restaurants, while those who are facing financial difficulties can donate less (or nothing).

 With community seating and anonymous giving, ALL members of the community dine together in an atmosphere that promotes neighbors helping neighbors by doing something most of us do anyway – going out to eat! By visiting All Are Welcome in October, you will help SCARE AWAY HUNGER and build community one meal at a time.

 All Are Welcome serves lunch every Thursday, 11AM – 2PM and breakfast every Saturday, 7:30AM – 11AM. Located at 60 Union Street, Middleboro MA 02346 (in the Church of Our Saviour parish hall).  More information available on Facebook at facebook.com/AAW.42 or online at allarewelcome.us.