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Broad Street Ministries

Broad Street Ministries

“Practicing Radical Hospitality”


315 South Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107    Julia Wallis volunteer coordinator:


Wednesday 2:30-6pm  or Saturday 10:45-1:30pm 

IMPORTANT: It is not enough to sign up through the Office of Service Learning: Students will confirm service on Broad Street Ministry volunteer hub   Go to dates assigned for Villanova and check off box marked Villanova which will give you access to those dates.


Broad Street Ministry (“BSM”) is a broad-minded Christian community that cherishes creativity, fosters and nurtures artistic expression, extends inclusive hospitality and—works for a more just world through civic engagement.  “Our approach to building community has several facets, but at its core it is still about serving nutritious meals to vulnerable people, while continually engaging with our guests to create opportunities for them to become more stable and more secure in terms of their basic needs for food and shelter.”


·         What do volunteers do?   On days that they will be serving, students are to enter the front door of BSM and locate a staff member with a green nametag who will direct them to the large dining hall for orientation.

  • Greeters: Welcome guests at the front door with Mr. Elbert, BSM’s Ambassador of Welcome.

·         Servers: Help with the hands-on preparation, serving and busing of the food in the Cathedral Dining Room – this includes greeting those at the tables that you are serving.

·         Personal Care Helpers: Pack and distribute hygiene kits/items for distribution to our guests.

·         Clothing Closet: Assist our guest in selecting donated items to wear.

·         Mail Service:  Help sort, file and distribute mail. You will get to know our guests and, with assistance from a staff member, help guide them to important resources.

·         Therapeutic Arts (Thursday Breaking Bread only):  To volunteer at the art table you do not need to be “artsy,” all you need to be is patient, kind and encouraging to our guests.


  1. Who does BSM serve?   What are the demographics of the community that the agency reaches? (Population, age, ethnicity, average income, gender, major issues...)

Age: 35-50 (average)

Ethnicity: 80% African American

Gender: 80% Male; 20% Female

Major Issues: 12% homeless but most face housing insecurity; veteran population



What do our students say about serving at Broad Street Ministries?

     At Broad Street Ministry Hospitality Cooperative, Villanova students join other volunteers to help provide various services to the vulnerable population of Philadelphia. Broad Street Ministry provides meals, clothing, personal care items, a mail service and more. On Saturdays, volunteers help to set up, serve, and clean up the lunch meal, as well as to help run the Clothing Closet. However, our experiences at Broad Street Ministry run deeper than merely serving a meal. Part of what makes Broad Street so special is the intention behind each aspect of the day. From the beautiful paper cranes hanging from the ceiling of the church to the calming music, the space is created to be a safe and welcoming space for anybody in need of support. At Broad Street Ministry, we (volunteers) wear nametags and serve the food, so that we may make meaningful connections with the guests. Broad Street Ministry truly lives up to its promise to “spread radical hospitability” and uphold the dignity of all guests, and I have learned so much by working there.  Anna Briker ‘17