Every Sunday, a group of volunteers ventures into the woods of Charles County. They’re not out for a hike or to enjoy the scenery. They’re delivering meals to the homeless residents who have set up camp among the trees.
These volunteers are from The Arnold House, a Waldorf-based nonprofit organization dedicated to raising awareness of homelessness and hunger in Southern Maryland. When the organization was founded almost three years ago, The Arnold House was feeding 15 homeless people on Sundays. Today, they bring about 120 meals to multiple camps and shelters in the county.
But Sunday isn’t the only day these dedicated citizens serve those around them. Every week, The Arnold House hosts its soup kitchen, Ladles of Love, at the Metropolitan United Methodist Church in Indian Head. The meal is served each Wednesday from 5 to 7 p.m. at the church, which is located at 3385 Metropolitan Church Road in Indian Head.
And, The Arnold House has helped to start the Backpack Program for children in Charles County who might otherwise go hungry over the weekend when school is not in session. Currently, the program serves 20 schools in Charles County, sending food home with kids so they have meals each weekend.
The Arnold House also hosts school supply drives, food drives, free produce days, and fundraising events. Its food pantry is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the organization’s location, 3444 Rockefeller Court in Waldorf. See the organization’s event calendar on its website.
How can you get involved? The Arnold House accepts donations of food and personal hygiene items. Cash donations are also welcome to purchase food, camp supplies, or to pay for motel rooms for homeless citizens. You can also sponsor a night at the weekly Ladles of Love soup kitchen.
Want to give time? Volunteers are needed in several capacities, including:
- Preparing and serving food at the soup kitchen
- Helping at clothing and food drives and at fundraising events
- Packing food bags
- Administrative support
Find out more by completing the volunteer form on the organization’s website.
(Images via The Arnold House on Facebook.)
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