New executive director at Friendship Inn
By Kiply Lukan Yaworski
SASKATOON — Each and every day of the year, Saskatoon Friendship Inn serves breakfast and lunch to all who walk through the door.
The Friendship Inn builds connections with those in need, and in addition to its free meal service, offered in a spirit of friendship and respect, the Inn often provides other needed supports and referrals.
The Friendship Inn’s new executive director is enthusiastic about the importance of these services. “I’m really passionate about the Inn’s mission and the opportunity we have to journey with people living in poverty, and to assist them in their needs,” says Sandra Stack.
After moving to Saskatchewan five years ago, Stack found herself drawn to the inner city and the people who call it home. She learned more about Saskatoon Friendship Inn and began volunteering in January 2012. “I offered my services as a volunteer, and knew right away that I was home,” she says.
A few months later, she took on the role of family worker. “In that position, I had the opportunity to develop personal and meaningful relationships with our guests, as well as with community organizations that support the Inn and its mission to feed the hungry and support the community.”
Now as the Inn’s new executive director, Stack continues to witness first-hand the positive impact that the meals and the services offered at Saskatoon Friendship Inn have upon the lives of some of our community’s most vulnerable members. Thanks to donors and volunteers, Friendship Inn makes a difference, she says.
In its expanded new building, the Inn is able to host community programming, working with a number of partners. A few examples include: Classic Legal Services, MACSI Addiction Centre, Public Health services, a Mom and Baby Clinic, and a Just 4 Dads Parenting class, she notes.
Feeding the hungry remains at the heart of the Inn’s mission, and Stack is grateful for the support that allows this to continue. “We are currently serving about 900 meals a day to families and individuals living in the inner city of Saskatoon,” she notes.
“Thanks to generous donations this year, we have been able to sustain our meal service through the most difficult months, when families find it harder to make ends meet,” says Stack. Right now, the Inn is in need of more volunteers, whether individuals or groups from organizations or churches.
Another pressing need is food donations for the Thanksgiving meal. Last year the line for the traditional dinner went round the block as the Inn served some 1,500 turkey dinners and all the fixings. Needed items include turkeys, cabbage, potatoes, carrots and butter.
For information about volunteering or donating, contact 306-242-5122.