Nourishished Neighborhood: Community Meals - Donate Option
Nourishished Neighborhood: Community Meals - Donate Option
What are “Nourished Neighborhood: Community Meals by Succulent Catering”?
Nourished Neighborhood: Community Meals are a monthly meal served on the first Wednesday of each month at the Atrium Kitchen at Pike Place Market (enter at 1433 1st Ave) FREE to ALL members of our community. And a very special Thanksgiving Nourished Neighborhood: Community Breakfast is also served in addition to the monthly meal.
ABOUT Nourished Neighborhood
Nourished Neighborhood (NN) was started in February 2017 by Chef Traci Calderon, owner of Succulent Catering and Atrium Kitchen at Pike Place Market. Inspired by life factors, Chef Traci sought a way to bring all members of our downtown community to come and eat together. Sharing a hot, nourishing meal, seniors, downtown business people, and members of the Pike Place Market community have the opportunity to come together with food-insecure lower income and homeless citizens. It’s not just food that is served up – but human connection.
Each meal starts with an abundant salad, a hearty main dish, side dishes, a sweet dessert and a fun beverage. The meals typically will feature one of Chef Traci’s family recipes as the inspiration and focal point of the meal, and she often finds inspiration in her late mother and father’s recipe boxes and cookbooks. Nourished Neighborhood is also a tribute to Chef Traci’s parents.
Nourished Neighborhood is funded from Chef Traci’s businesses and contributions from customers and visitors. On average, each meal costs between $400-$600 to provide. And all staff are volunteers who donate their time to help cook and/or serve the community meal.
A donation box is present at each meal, and donations are traditionally given to the Pike Market Senior Center and Food Bank, so they can continue the work they do. In addition, a portion of the funds donated go back to fund future Nourished Neighborhoods.
In addition to a warm meal and human connection, Nourished Neighborhood has on two separate occasions, offered new pairs of socks and personal hygiene items as well to anyone in need. These items are donations from Nourished Neighborhood volunteers.
A crew of a minimum of 4 to 10 volunteers show up on the Tuesday preceding the first Wednesday of the month to prepare and cook the Nourished Neighborhood meal. Additionally, volunteers arrive between 10:00am-11:00am on the first Wednesday to finish preparations, set up the buffet with festive linens and tablescapes, and service begins at 11:30am until 1:00pm.
From Chef Calderon: “Nourished Neighborhood is a way to use my talents for good and not evil. Kidding, of course. I lead with my heart. And Nourished Neighborhood is a way to reach into my community, to strengthen it, to connect it and to celebrate it – all with a meal. I started Nourished Neighborhood at a time in my life where I was dealing with a tremendous loss. That coupled with the threat of Meals on Wheels potentially being cut, was too much. I couldn’t fathom the thought that people who had worked their entire lives would be experiencing food insecurity.
Nourished Neighborhood is about more than food. It’s about bringing people together. Our bodies need nourishment but so do our souls. The humanity we have encountered in the last year and half of serving these meals has both humbled me, brought me joy as well as brought me to tears. A man named Cali, who had not eaten in three days had his quality of life changed by coming to Nourished Neighborhood, at the suggestion of another homeless man. We introduced Cali to the Pike Market Food Bank and within 10 days, when he came back to visit us at the Atrium Kitchen, we saw a completely different man. He and his dog Mija were getting regular boxes of food from the food bank, he’d obtained a job with the city, and he wanted to come say thank you. Cali is on my heart forever. I left the darkness and turned to the light. We don’t know what path people are walking, so if we can treat everyone with kindness, compassion and empathy, I think we are doing something good for our community.
The mission of my business to “celebrate, educate and cultivate.” We use food as a way to celebrate our community and coming together, we cultivate connectedness and we, on occasion have educated and been educated on the nuances of our community in need. It will always be my great privilege to serve people nourishing, beautiful food.”
The Numbers & Facts:
To date we have served over 7,000 meals.
Started February 8, 2017
Over $2,430 dollars have been donated, and in turn have been donated to Pike Market Senior Center and Food Bank, the Houston Food Bank after the hurricane in 2017, and back into the Nourished Neighborhood fund.
Each monthly meal averages a cost between $400-$700
Menus are inspired by Chef Calderon’s family recipes and cherished meal-time memories
Wednesday, August 7, 2019 // 11:30am-1:00pm
Wednesday, September 4, 2019 // 11:30am-1:00pm
Wednesday, October 2, 2019 // 11:30am-1:00pm
Wednesday, November 6, 2019 // 11:30am-1:00pm
Thursday, November 28, 2019 - Special Thanksgiving Breakfast // 8:00am-10:00am
Wednesday, December 4, 2019 // 11:30am-1:00pm
Can I volunteer?
Yes! We are always looking for volunteers. Please email Traci at firstname.lastname@example.org
Who pays for Nourished Neighborhood?
Chef Traci and her businesses Succulent Catering and Atrium Kitchen pay for the majority of the Nourished Neighborhood lunches. Private donations have been received from employees of Bloom Projects, and Mr. Mitchell Green.
I can’t volunteer but I would like to donate, how can I make a donation?
There is a Donate Now button on the Atrium Kitchen website: www.atriumkitchenpikeplace.com Thank you for your generosity!
Are you on social media?
FB: @NourishedNeighborhood, @marketatriumkitchen, @succulentcatering
Instagram: @nourishedneighborhood, @atriumkitchenatpikeplace, @succulentcatering