Volunteers Help St. Anthony’s Prepare New Community Dining Room

Hundreds of volunteers and community leaders formed a human assembly line in San Francisco’s Tenderloin neighborhood Thursday morning to shuttle dining trays from St. Anthony’s old community dining room to its new one across the street.

Colleen Rivecca, an advocacy coordinator at St. Anthony’s San Francisco, said the new dining room will be able to accommodate twice as many people as the old dining room.

Thursday’s “Set the Table” event brought hundreds of volunteers to St. Anthony’s and shuttled trays out of the old building, across the busy street and into the new building.

Rivecca said that any member of the community in need is welcome to join St. Anthony’s for a meal, but due to the high demand for food, about 3,000 people served per day, the dining room often had long lines with long waiting times.

The new dining room at 121 Golden Gate Ave. will be able to hold 300 diners at any one time, twice the capacity of the old dining room, Rivecca said.

The new building will also provide 89 housing units to low-income residents and provide a variety of community services including a free clothing program, a social work center, a medical clinic, and job training.

On Saturday, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, San Francisco police Chief Greg Suhr and other community leaders will attend a ribbon-cutting ceremony that will officially open the doors of St. Anthony’s new state-of the art facility to the public.

The ribbon-cutting ceremony will take place Saturday at 10 a.m. at the new facility.

Hannah Albarazi, Bay City News

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