More than a dozen groups are banding together this year in an effort to make sure there are plenty of Thanksgiving dinners available for Washington's poor and homeless.
Social service agencies are expecting more customers than they usually have because of the recession and the high unemployment rate. The agencies estimate 5,000 free dinners will be served throughout the city.
The Community for Creative Non-Violence, which offers meals for the poor all year, expects to serve 1,000 in Lafayette Park on Thanksgiving. Coordinator Mitch Snyder said activist Dick Gregory will help.
Except for the Department of Recreation's annual dinner for senior citizens, most of the efforts to provide Thanksgiving dinner are private. The D.C. Department of Human Services is seeking contributions for clothing and toys for Christmas, but the city has no money budgeted to provide Thanksgiving dinners for the poor, said Joan Reeves, a department spokesman. "About all we can do is rely on contributions," Reeves said.
Volunteers and social workers said they would appreciate more concern for the homeless all year, and not only at Thanksgiving and Christmas.
The Rev. John Steinbruck, pastor of Luther Place Memorial Church on N Street and Vermont Avenue NW, said there is so much food donated on Thanksgiving that ". . . more is thrown away than is donated to the poor the rest of the year."
Here is a partial list of churches and agencies that will provide Thanksgiving dinner for the needy. Agencies and churches marked with an asterisk (*) say they provide daily or weekly service to the poor. The Council of Churches of Greater Washington will provide transportation to several locations. Call Vicki Williams or the Rev. Rodney Young at 332-2080 for transportation or to volunteer to help serve, monitor and clean up.
Bethany Women's Center,* 1335 N St. NW. At noon. To volunteer to serve, call Erna Steinbruck at 483-3739. Serves a daily hot meal and provides counseling to homeless women.
Calvary Baptist Church,* 755 Eighth St. NW. Noon to 3 p.m. To volunteer to serve or donate money to pay for the dinner, call Rev. Rodney Bolton at 347-8355. Breakfast and counseling for the homeless. Monday to Friday, 9 to 11 a.m. Distributes emergency food.
Church of the Savior,* at the Potter's House, 1658 Columbia Rd. NW. Noon. For people who have participated in the church outreach programs during the year. Runs drop-in center for mothers; distributes clothing, furniture and household items; provides health care, low-cost housing and job training.
Community for Creative Non-Violence,* Lafayette Park, 3 to 5 p.m. To volunteer, call Mitch Snyder at 667-6407. CCNV needs cooked, carved turkeys or will provide turkeys to people willing to cook them. CCNV serves a hot meal daily between 5 and 6:15 p.m. at 632 G St. NW; distributes clothing on Sundays from 9 a.m. to noon; distributes groceries at 9 a.m. Monday through Saturday at Calvary Methodist Church, 1459 Columbia Rd. NW.
D.C. Department of Recreation, 18th annual dinner for senior citizens. 1 p.m. at Georgetown University's Darnell Hall. The department will provide transportation to the dinner and will send volunteers to pick up the handicapped. Persons interested in attending may call Juanita Moore at 673-6973.
Mount Horeb Baptist Church, 2914 Bladensburg Rd. NE. Opens at noon.
Gospel Mission,* 810 Fifth St. NW. Begins serving at 6:30 p.m. To donate turkeys, call the Rev. Lincoln Brooks at 842-1731. Provides food and shelter to homeless men.
House of Imogene,* 214 P St. NW. Noon to 2 p.m. Family shelter.
Lane C.M.E. Church, 14th and C streets NE. Opens at noon.
Masonic Temple, 1000 U St. NW. 12:30 to 2 p.m.
Missionaries of Charity,* 3310 Wheeler Rd. SE. Noon. Serves a daily hot meal, distributes clothing, runs after-school program for children.
Peace Baptist Church and Purity Baptist Church, 1325 Maryland Ave. NE. Opens at noon.
Salvation Army,* 1211 G St. SE. Noon to 4 p.m. Provides food, clothing, furniture and emergency funds to the needy. Also provides job counseling.
Salvation Army,* Adult Rehabilitation Center, 526 First St. NW. Noon to 4 p.m. To volunteer, call Maj. Richard McConnell at 347-8089. Provides alcohol rehabilitation in a live-in program. Provides job counseling and referrals.
So Others May Eat (SOME),* 71 O St. NW. Opens at noon. To volunteer to help, or donate turkey, call Sister JoAnne Courneen at 797-8806. SOME is open every day for breakfast and dinner.
St. Stephen and the Incarnation Church,* 16th and Newton streets NW. Noon to 3 p.m. Volunteers are needed to help serve and clean up. Call the church at 265-0142. Coffee and doughnuts every morning for senior citizens, dinner every Saturday, Sunday and all federal holidays. Distributes groceries.
The following agencies will not serve Thanksgiving dinner, but do provide food, clothing or shelter to the needy.
Bread for the City, 1305 14th St. NW. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Provides emergency food and clothing to families and the disabled. Call or walk in, 332-0440.
Capital Area Community Food Bank, 2266 25th Place NE. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Group provides brand name food (vegetables, frozen chicken, bread) to nonprofit groups with IRS 501c3 tax exempt status only, not to individuals. All food is available for a contribution of 10 cents a pound and must be used to feed the elderly, ill or needy.
Central Union Mission, currently at 613 C St. NW; after Dec. 15 at 1631 14th St. NW. Offers emergency food, clothing and shelter for homeless men. Call 628-4349.
Church of the Bretheren, Fourth Street and North Carolina Avenue SE. Serves soup and sandwiches weekdays from noon to 1:30 p.m.
Community Warehouse, 2010 Kendall St. NE. Thursday and Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Wednesday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Provides low-cost food in bulk. Only checks, money orders and food stamps accepted; no cash. Call for free price list. 832-4517.
Council of Churches of Greater Washington, Blair School, 611 I St. NE and Pierce School, 14th and G streets NE. Food, shelter and job counseling for homeless men. Call 332-2080.
D.C. Council on Clothing for Kids, 2728 Sherman Ave. NW. Monday through Friday, 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Provides clothing to school children on referral from social service agencies and schools. Call 232-0700.
Deborah's Place Thrift Shop, 14th and N streets NW. Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Low-cost clothing for men, women and children. Nonprofit.
First Congregational Church and Metropolitan Community Church, 10th and G streets NW. Provides a hot meal to homeless women Monday through Friday at 5:30 p.m.
Hannah's House, 612 M St. NW. Shelter for homeless women; no children. Call first. 289-4840.
Hospitality House, 337 H St. NE. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Provides clothing, emergency food and assistance in locating housing.
Madison Center, 10th and G streets NE. Shelter for homeless women, and battered women and children. Call 547-2600.
Mount Carmel House, 471 G Place NW. Shelter for homeless women. No children. Call first to be sure of space. 289-6315.
My Sister's Place. Location confidential. Shelter for battered women and children. Call 529-5991.
Northeast Rescue Mission, 317 Eighth St. NE. Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Shelter for homeless men, low-cost clothing and snacks for children. Call 543-4955.
Northwest Settlement House, 448 Ridge St. NW. Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Provides emergency food, free furniture storage for evicted persons and counseling. Call 638-4736.
St. Paul's Episcopal Church, 2430 K St. NW. Distributes food to homeless people living on heating grates in Foggy Bottom area.
Salvation Army, 503 E St. NW. Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Provides food, clothing and furniture to needy; also emergency shelter and funds for utility bills and rent. Call 783-4050. Emergency number is 783-4058.
Sarah House, 1329 N St. NW. Year-round home for homeless women. Provides counseling and some training for residents. Call 232-6l67.