From the very beginning in 1887, the people of Calvary have dedicated time and resources to helping others in Christ's name. In more recent years, Calvary's support of the homeless and near homeless community here in Riverside has grown in size as well as support. In cooperation with other local charities and churches, Calvary has been able to provide a variety of services to those in need which include the Calvary Hot Meals program, the Calvary Clothes Closet, Sole Exchange, Taking it to the Streets, as well as free medical and dental care. For more information on how to donate or volunteer, please read below or feel free to contact us.
Over forty people help plan, shop, cook, organize and serve a weekly hot meal on Sunday nights for nearly 150 homeless and near-homeless people of Riverside. Held in Copeland Hall below the sanctuary since 1983, we provide a nutritious meal and clean used clothes as well as live music while they eat. The meal is served from 5:30 p.m. - 6:00 pm. and special meals are provided during Thanksgiving and Christmas.
We encourage other churches and organizations to come and help us serve. If you want to serve call our Hot Meals Coordinator, Sonja Almgren at (951) 479-6805 and schedule a Sunday for your group. If you are one or two, come at 5:15 p.m. downstairs to the Copeland Hall Kitchen. You will be finished at 6 p.m. We hope you will come join us in serving a warm meal to our neighbors in need!
CLOTHES CLOSET HOURS:
Sundays, Copeland Hall
5:30 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Open during the Hot Meals program in our Copeland Hall, the Calvary Clothes Closet provides clothes and other items that the individuals who visit the Hot Meals program may need. If you are interested in donating items for the Clothes Closet, or would like a list of needed items, please contact the church office at (951) 686-0761.
In partnership with Loma Linda University Dental School, we help support the cost of a dental van that comes nearly every month prior to the Hot Meal to give free complete dental care for our guests.
We also partner with Kaiser Foundation and Path of Life to provide a Medical Van free of charge. These vans rotate about every 6 weeks and can be found in our downstairs parking area near Copeland Hall during their scheduled visits. All care is provided on a first-come-first-serve basis. For information regarding the next medical or dental van date please contact the church office.
This ministry was birthed with a mind towards caring for the homeless and under-served with new or slightly used used. Using the example of Jesus washing the feet of Peter in John 13:1-7, we have them pick out their shoes and then we wash the recipients feet as an act of service before they put on their shoes. During that same time, we talk with them and pray with them if they wish it. It is a powerful exchange of love and service to those who walk the streets every day or for families with children who can't afford new shoes. It is always a joyous exchange
Five years ago, Lori Rich and her teenage daughter, Shira saw a homeless person with a dog and wondered aloud, "who helps them with supplies for their dogs?" She and Lori created a ministry out of their SUV to the homeless that provides them with collars, leashes, treats, toys, blankets and dog food. Now, with her daughter away at college, Lori goes out every day connecting with folks, arranging donations to get all their dogs spayed or neutered. To date, Lori has successfully provided over 400 of these surgeries. They are a 501(c)3 non-profit who accepts donations. They come about once a month with their "Street Store" to Hot Meals.
For more information about "Taking it to the Streets" please see their Facebook page!