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A Community Lunch

Each week beginning in 2018, we’re partnering with community organizations, local businesses, and individual volunteers to offer a free, hot meal to anyone who wants one.  This may include seniors, local business people, the homeless, the handicapped, children, single or stay-at-home parents, and anybody else.  Guests can expect to enjoy a hot meal, meet their neighbors, and participate in the vital community of Portsmouth.

A Meal with Dignity

Volunteers will prepare and serve a hot, plated meal under the guidance of a local chef.  Volunteers and local students will help clean up after the lunch, providing valuable community service experience.

A Community Lunch at a Common Location

Seacoast Community Lunch will be available each Wednesday on the lower level of Middle Street Baptist Church in the heart of Portsmouth.  Our building has recently been redesigned and renovated in order to enable us to better serve our community, including a brand new kitchen and a welcoming dining area.  

The Background

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This lunch is largely modeled on the weekly Common Table lunch at St. John’s Episcopal Church in Portsmouth.  Common Table leaders have generously provided us with ideas, encouragement, and support as we begin our own Community Lunch.  We urge you to consider supporting them as well!  
See www.stjohnsnh.org/common-table for information.

Financial details:

The Seacoast Community Lunch will be hosted at Middle Street Baptist Church in Portsmouth.  The lunch will be covered by the church’s tax-exempt, 501(c)(3) status, and its finances are entirely separate from other church funds.  We will gladly provide our EIN and other necessary tax information upon request.

Whether you give time, expertise, money, or goods, your contribution matters!  The sum of our work together is greater than the individual parts.  

How can I help?

I am a(n)…

Restaurant operator:

  • Provide food (i.e., bread, salads, soup, spices, or even a full meal).
  • Provide chef from your restaurant to serve once every 6–8 weeks.
  • Tell your other restaurant contacts about our lunch.
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Chef:

  • Volunteer to help lead us once every 6–8 weeks!
  • Help us gather meal ideas.
  • Provide your expertise in helping us refine our service standards.

Individual:

  • Volunteer!  You can help us prepare, cook, and serve our meals; set up or clean up before and after our meals; provide a welcoming atmosphere by providing live music, or serve as a host, so that the first thing our guests see is your welcoming face!

Church or community organization:

  • Organize a volunteer group to serve once/month.

Grocery store or other business:

  • Provide donations in kind (food, flowers, time/services [tax advice], cleaning supplies/services, take-home bags, etc.)
  • Give financially to support our work.
  • Provide food for guests to take home.

The benefits

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When you serve, you get more than you give.  Here are some of the benefits that can come with serving:

  • You will know the personal satisfaction of meeting your neighbors’ physical and social needs
  • You may gain new skills, like how to cook a healthy meal or how to lead and organize a volunteer group.
  • You will grow closer with your fellow volunteers.
  • You can be a part of advancing the common good of Portsmouth.
  • You’ll have fun – we’re serving a meal with dignity and joy!  When you give joy, you get joy!

CONTACT

For If you have questions or would like to give, please send an email to lunch@middle.st.

Some current partners

Atlantic Grill
Country View Restaurant
Tuscan Kitchen