Every day, Raphael House provides a stable, home-like environment where Bay Area families experiencing homelessness can grow beyond poverty. Our Residential Shelter kitchen and dining room are at the heart of this environment, providing families with a safe space to reflect and enjoy warm meals together.
It takes hard work and commitment to prepare and serve more than 15,000 annual individual meals at Raphael House, so an overhaul of our kitchen was long overdue to meet the needs of our families. We are grateful that long-time Raphael House supporter and Board Chair Emeritus Kate Smith spearheaded a renovation, and thanks to the generosity of an anonymous donor and local businesses, the updated kitchen was finally revealed this year.
The extensive renovation—in honor of Smith’s father and long-time Raphael House volunteer Donald Fredrick MacDonald—was necessary to help maintain the warm, loving atmosphere throughout our Residential Shelter.
“We always want Raphael House families to feel that we love and care about them,” said Kitchen Manager Lorraine Hanks. “This brand-new kitchen shows that.”
Aside from providing a space to cook thousands of meals every year, the renovated kitchen allows staff and volunteers to wash dishes more efficiently, provide refreshing drinks quickly, and keep food warm as families join each other for dinner in our cozy dining room.
“The kitchen and tables where our families join together are symbols of hope, safety, reflection and calm,” said Kate Smith. “It is the place where our families sit together, sharing where they are in their journeys to break the cycle of homelessness.”
The collaborative work of so many made this renovation possible. Raphael House thanks the following for their help in completing this important project: Ed Conlon and the Hathaway Dinwiddie Construction team; Aramark; the British-American Business Council; Nahum Goldberg of NGAssociates; Guenter Guletz of TriMark; Jennifer Tulley Architects; Bob Kunst Painting; and an anonymous donor.
This kitchen renovation was possible thanks to the generosity of our donors who believe in the importance of a warm meal and a safe environment where families can create stronger bonds to break the cycle of poverty.
More photos of our renovated kitchen below:
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