New Face at Food Cupboard

As you know, Christine Neville has been our Servant Year member and leader of the Food Cupboard for the past year. She has helped us maintain our momentum, has brought in new grants, has helped us expand to 2 new sites (Free Church of St. John in Kensington and St. Barnabas’ Mission at 61st and Girard), and has laid the foundation for a new site (St. Gabriel’s) and a mobile food truck. We have been blessed by her ministry among us. But, as the name implies, Servant Year lasts for a year and Christine’s time with us will come to a close at the end of July.

In contemplating future food cupboard leadership, Kat Dunne, Ben Houck, Jay Newlin, Kerry Woodward, Dawn Bruno, Christine, and I decided that, as wonderful as the Servant Year program is, having a new person assume leadership every year is a little tricky for all involved. Having some continuity on Saturday mornings and some institutional memory both seem to be valuable things for the Food Cupboard. To that end we are going back to having a part-time manager, along the lines of what Mike Master did. Mike was not available to reassume the job, but we are thrilled to let you know that Lisa Gaidanowicz has accepted the position. Lisa has experience with the Food Trust, with the YESTECH program for at risk Philadelphia youth, and, most recently, she has founded and directs Urbanstead. Urbanstead ( “works to achieve food security by uniting the community and creating programs to involve our city’s vulnerable youth through the medium of urban farming. We work to develop leadership and career skills in urban agriculture with young people in Philadelphia.” Through her experience with Urbanstead, Lisa has become adept at securing grant funding, managing volunteers, and organizing systems and structures. She will be a great asset to the Food Cupboard and I know you will each give her a warm St. Peter’s welcome.

Lisa will begin in mid-July, shadowing Christine for a week then managing the Food Cupboard with Christine supporting her for a week. Please join me in extending deep thanks to Christine for her work with us over the past year and in wishing her well in the future.

With thanks for all you do to feed God’s people.