Agape Community Kitchen

Youth-led mission of The Presbyterian Church in Westfield

What is Agape?

Agape is a Greek word that means love, but not just any love – God’s love. Agape is God’s unconditional love for the world. We express that every week when we open the doors of First Presbyterian Church in Elizabeth and welcome people into a space where they can enjoy a hearty meal in a loving environment.

Since 2000, Agape – as we call it – has been a youth-led mission of our church. We believe it is important to give young people meaningful ways to be in leadership roles through our church. With the support of a team of awesome adults, it is the students who lead the meal service. We value young people and know God does too. You don’t have to be Presbyterian to serve with us, you don’t even have to be Christian, you just have to be willing to show up and show your respect to the community to be a part of Agape.

When & Where

We meet every Wednesday @ 3:15PM in the church parking lot. Transportation is provided to and from Elizabeth. We usually return around 7:30PM.

Registration Form for Students

No RSVP necessary to volunteer, but a registration form must be completed and kept on file for students in grades 6-12.

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Adult Opportunities

We are always looking for adult volunteers – from our congregation, other churches or  groups -  to assist on site and behind the scenes in a variety of ways.

Weekly Coordinators

Coordinators plan the week’s meal, put together the shopping list, send out weekly reminders to the volunteers on the schedule and then lead onsite in the kitchen. Sounds like a lot, but it is simple and rewarding and you’ll have a seasoned Weekly Coordinator help you get started! You won’t be left alone!

Meal Team

Agape serves eight different meals and four different desserts, which are rotated each week. Our meal and dessert teams cook in their homes and deliver the food to our church’s Westfield Kitchen.

Westfield Kitchen Cooks

Every Wednesday two or three adult volunteers finish preparing the meals cooked by our meal teams. They arrive around 1pm and finish by 3pm.

Shoppers

Our shoppers pick up pre-ordered groceries and supplies from Restaurant Depot in Union and deliver those items to our church on Tuesday or Wednesday morning.

Laundry

Our laundry volunteers pick up any dirty aprons and dishrags brought home from Elizabeth each Wednesday, wash them and return them to PCW anytime before the following Wednesday.

Write Grant Proposals

The grant committee develops grant projects, writes proposals and targets businesses for donations of services or merchandise to the mission.

Clothing Closet

The Agape Clothing Closet distributes newly purchased clothing to our guests on the third Wednesday of every month.

If you are interested in supporting the Agape Clothing Closet, you can provide a monetary gift online, through the church office or take part in our Clothing Closet Fundraisers throughout the year.

*May 5-9, 2019 is our next Clothing Closet Fundraiser, where money will be raised by collecting gently used clothing items.*

The closet is overseen by Lisa and Abbey Colao.

FAQ

Can I volunteer at Agape?

We welcome teens in 6th-12th grade. Groups of more than five students must contact our Agape Administrator at agape@westfieldpc.org.

Are there registration forms for students?

If you are a parent/guardian of a student attending Agape for the first time, please complete the Google form. Your information will not be shared. It will only be used for emergency purposes only.

What do I wear to volunteer?

All volunteers must wear closed-toed shoes and no shorts, tank tops or flip flops.

What is your Snow Day policy?

When Westfield town schools are closed due to inclement weather, no youth will be taken onsite to Elizabeth that day.Take-away meals may be prepared at The Presbyterian Church in Westfield at 2:30p.m. by youth (with permission from a parent/guardian) and adults.The adults will hand out take-aways and hot cups of coffee to anyone who comes by for a meal in Elizabeth.

Contact Linnette Cierpial at lcierpial@westfieldpc.org.

Where is First Presbyterian Church in Elizabeth located?

42 Broad St, Elizabeth, NJ 07201 | Get Directions

How can I give to support Agape?

You can give here.

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