The John P. Holland Division of the Ancient Order of Hibernians is blessed with brothers who are using their skills to help those around us. Several of the brothers are also active members of the Knights of Columbus and support their community activities. One of our brothers is a Knight and also has a full-time job as a general manager for the Aramark Food Services company. This company endorses charitable works in their local work site communities, and our brother is always alert to help those in the community.
For several years he had responded to the good intentions of students at one of the Aramark work sites and offered to provide meals for the students to distribute at the New London Homeless Hospitality Center (NLHHC). During the March 2014 meeting of our chapter, we discussed whether it would be possible to provide a monthly meal at this same center. That was the beginning of a multi-year project for our division.
Each month two brothers drive to an Aramark site and pick up four or five trays of a dinner meal and bring it to the NLHHC. Two or three of the brothers then serve the food to the residents in a cafeteria-like service line.
We had been serving on the first Friday of each month until June when the pandemic concerns ceased such group gatherings. On Friday, October 2, the NLHHC provided an outdoor tented site for serving meals and two of our brothers resumed their service.
Our visits to NLHHC are warmly received by residents. It gives them an opportunity to share their goals and their individual difficulties with us. It gives us, the members of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, so much more.
By John J. Moore