St. Bede’s offers many opportunities for hands-on service beyond what many parishioners do for worthy organizations on their own initiative. These include:
- Helping the homeless: Prepare and serve dinner, provide childcare and socialize with adults, or spend the night as an overnight host for families staying at a local church or synagogue as part of Home & Hope’s transitional shelter program. Volunteers serve as a group on a quarterly basis, or more frequently by request. On an occasional basis, volunteers assist at Habitat for Humanity build sites or on mission trips, such as to the Rosebud Lakota Sioux reservation in South Dakota through Tree of Life Ministry.
- Tutoring underprivileged children: Read picture books to kindergarteners and their parents, read chapter books and interact with elementary school students in an after- school book club, or help at-risk middle schoolers with literacy in several subjects, as part of Los Ayudantes’ outreach to young learners from Spanish-speaking homes. Volunteers serve on a weekly basis or as substitutes for regular volunteers.
- Processing in-kind donations: Sort and deliver food, clothing and other items collected through our Mindful Giving initiatives to area agencies serving the needy, or prepare collected items for semi-annual rummage sales (in Lent and Advent). Volunteers serve as part of a weekly delivery route or on an as-needed basis.
- Helping jail inmates and their families: Sort greeting cards collected year-round and distributed to county jail inmates by the Service League. Volunteers also bake Christmas cookies, decorate cookie bags and deliver them on Christmas Day to inmates and staff at the county jails.
- Comforting Stanford Hospital patients. Provide spiritual care, including friendly conversation, as requested by Episcopal patients, families or staff through the Episcopal Chaplaincy at Stanford Hospital, supervised by Rev. Tom Jackson, a former Bede’s parishioner. The chaplaincy is part of Stanford’s Interfaith Spiritual Care Department, which provides training to all volunteers, who serve on a weekly or as-available basis.