When the five BES members arrived at Moveable Treats on April 14, we were greeted by Tom Patrick, the amiable Volunteer Coordinator. He offered an engaging overview of this remarkable organization. Although BES has been providing desserts for Moveable Treats for years, some of our members don’t know a whole lot about it. Founded in 1990 and now settled in a sparkling renovated building at 901 N. Milton Avenue, Moveable Treats brings meals and/or medical transportation every week to over a thousand clients who suffer from HIV/AIDS, breast or blood cancer, or homelessness. This would not be possible without the dedication of its 35 employees and the 10,000 volunteers who offered 54,000 hours of service last year! Happy to be a small part of this year’s 10,000, Karen Elliott, Bobbie Hahn, Kathryn Sloboda, Lisa Alderson, and I were soon looking smashing in our hairnets, aprons, and rubber gloves!
Our work mainly involved packing up bag lunches – sandwich, orange, and goldfish cracker treats. My job consisted in packing these lunches in boxes and then labeling how many I fit in each. My BES cohorts worked fast and soon the bags were crowding the table. I had a flashback to an I Love Lucy episode when Lucy, as a newly hired assembly line worker, comically fell behind and was soon buried in her product. Playing the role of Lucy, and good naturedly ribbed by Bobbi for being the weak link, I think I managed to pack about 150 lunches in fifteen minutes.
We then met Heide Morgan, a long time volunteer at Moveable Feast. She has been showing up on the second Thursday each month for her own tradition of “baking night.” From 6:00-9:00PM, Heide and her helpers bake cakes, pies, and cookies by the dozens. We hit it off pretty well and were invited to join her on future baking nights, the next being May 12. She can use all the help she can get that night as she will be producing cookies for Moveable Treat’s annual 2-day, 140 mile bike ride fundraiser from Ocean City to Baltimore. Money raised goes directly to Moveable Feast clients. The cookies will help provide the bikers with energy for their May 14-15 trip!
Movable Feast offers much more than these fundraising snacks and thousands of home delivered meals. Services also include nutritional counseling, transportation to and from medical appointments, and culinary training for those who otherwise have few career options in their lives.
Having met the Executive Director, Tom Boderenko, a couple of months ago, I am very motivated to become more connected to this service organization. Tom reminded me that while the public seems less concerned with HIV/AIDS than in the past, it still is the scourge of inner city life in cities like Baltimore where one out of every four African-American men are infected. Drugs have, thankfully, prolonged life expectancy for those with HIV/AIDS. What many don’t know, however, is that these drugs have long-term side effects that can be debilitating and render people in great need of help from fellow Baltimoreans. Tom, while retired from a career as a Catholic priest, expresses a new type of ministry through his dedication to Moveable Feast. He struck me as someone who has truly put deed above creed. Please consider joining a small BES group going to help Heide and Moveable Feast on May 12. Contact Hugh to be involved – there are hairnets and gloves to fit all sizes!
Do you have an ethical action commitment or event you are willing to share in the newsletter? Please contact Hugh at Leader@BaltimoreEthicalSociety.org.