Guidelines for Volunteers

Working at Saturday's or Sunday's Bread involves a commitment of about four hours, not including travel time. The schedule is 12:30 PM to 4:30 PM at the Church of St. John the Evangelist,

35 Bowdoin Street on Beacon Hill in Boston.

Guests are served from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m..  Cleanup follows from 3:30 to 4:00 or 4:15. Everything is well prepared in advance to make effective use of your time, but expect to work hard for four hours. The day's work is overseen by a Kitchen Executive, an experienced volunteer who assigns jobs and makes any other decisions required.

Youths aged 15 to 17 can work in the kitchen, but are not allowed by state law to serve tables in this restaurant-style setting. There's plenty of work to do setting up, helping the flow of plates from the kitchen to the dining room counter and cleaning up. Saturday's/Sunday's Bread is very popular with youths. This is an ideal activity for parents and their children or teens doing a community service project.

Volunteers need to be on site downtown, ready to work at 12:30. You may want to carpool or take the T. Directions are below.

Be sure to have a meal before you go. Wear comfortable, rubber-soled shoes (floors can be
) and clothes that you won't mind getting a little dirty.  Bring an apron if you want to wear one;  a limited number should be available from the Kitchen Executive.

Do not bring food. All the food for the meal is arranged in advance. Collections of toiletries (from hotel stays, for example) are always welcome, but try to bring a fairly large number. We do not distribute clothing.

When you arrive, sign in at the counter, make yourself a name tag and ask for the Kitchen Executive to get your first task.

There is a brief meeting about 15 minutes before the doors are opened, during which specific jobs are assigned for the meal service.  Several people will work in the kitchen, putting the meals on plates, several more will serve as waiters, bringing the meals to the guests seated at tables.  One or two may be assigned to serving coffee. One person will be designated the doorman, with responsibility to control the flow of guests into the dining hall and to keep a count.  One person will be designated the maitre d', with responsibility for directing guests to tables and coordinating the waiters.  At the end of the meeting the volunteers usually join hands for a moment of reflection. Many of the volunteers come under the auspices of a religious organization; however, doctrinal discussions are not allowed, either among the volunteers or with the guests.

In general, there are no seconds until around 3:10 or 3:15.  About then, the Kitchen Executive will decide whether to offer seconds, based on his or her assessment of the remaining supply of and the demand for food.  Under city health code regulations, guests may not take food home.

The coordinator for Saturday Teams is Richard Wheeler (617-872-0096),;  the coordinator for Sunday Teams is Mark Metzger (781-648-2564),


The Church of St. John the Evangelist is at 35 Bowdoin Street, Boston, between Cambridge Street and Derne Street behind the State House. Click here for a map and driving directions from Yahoo.  The entrance to the dining hall is through the door to the right of the main church entrance.  Go up the ramp and ring the TOP BUTTON (this rings the loudest bell inside); if nobody opens the door within a minute or so, please ring the middle buzzer (this rings a bell in the dining hall). Either way, please be patient; it sometimes is hard to hear either bell in the dining hall or kitchen. If no one answers the bell after a few rings, try calling the KE on his or her cell phone.

Parking:  Parking is a challenge, so it's a good idea to carpool or to go by T if possible.  The on-street parking is very scarce.  The closest public parking is the 100 Cambridge Street Parking Garage, which you enter from Somerset Street, one block east of Bowdoin.  Parking at the garage is $10.00 for the full day on weekends. Nearby, the Government Center garage at 50 New Sudbury Street is also $10.00 for the full day on weekends.

There are a few other small parking lots nearby.  The Boston Common Garage, a little further away on the other side of the hill past the State House building, is $11 for the full day on weekends.

To reach the 100 Cambridge Street Parking Garage:  Coming from Storrow Drive and West, go one block past Bowdoin Street (and past the 100 Cambridge Street building). Turn right at the next light onto Somerset.  Coming from Government Center and South/East, turn left at the end of Center Plaza, the large, curved building opposite Government Center.  The garage is on the right in the first block.  If the auto entrance door is down, please knock;  the garage is open Saturdays and Sundays.

Public Transportation:  The closest T stop is the Government Center stop on the Green Line.  From the subway exit, walk west on Cambridge Street two blocks and turn left on Bowdoin.  The walk from the Park Street (Red/Green Line) station is a little longer, but a pleasant walk in good weather.  Follow Park Street toward the State House, turn right on Beacon, then quickly left onto Bowdoin. 



Commitment of Member Groups

If you are in an organization that would like to sponsor a volunteer group, we ask that you:



1. If feasible, identify up to 20 to 25 potential volunteers to participate in your group.

2. Plan to send a team (typically four to six volunteers) on a regular schedule that you and your group determine: E.g., Every four, six or eight weeks -- or once or twice a year.  
3. Designate one or two coordinators who can organize the group for each scheduled Saturday or Sunday and serve as a contact point for the team's coordinators.
4. Designate a delegate to attend Saturday's/Sunday's Bread board meetings three times a year.
5. Commit to an annual financial contribution.

Copyright 2011 Saturday's/Sunday's Bread