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How to Help Combat Hunger & Homelessness in Philadelphia


Courtesy of NHHAW


Every year, hunger and homelessness is brought to the forefront of our societal consciousness through National Hunger & Homelessness Awareness Week (NHHAW). In the week before Thanksgiving, The National Coalition for the Homeless works especially hard to raise awareness of these issues across the United States.

From November 14 through 22, local organizations in Philadelphia are planning and organizing initiatives to bring attention to the thousands of men and women who are homeless and food insecure within our city limits. Our community is lucky enough to have some incredible organizations backing these efforts year-round:


During the year, Philabundance links with businesses in the Delaware Valley through the many programs they have created to end hunger in our communities. Their mission of keeping everyone from going hungry is what strives them to continue to hold food drives and soup kitchens monthly. If you would like to volunteer this holiday season click here.


Metropolitan Area Neighborhood Nutrition Alliance (MANNA) is a non-profit organization that preps, cooks and delivers nutritious, medically-appropriate meals. They also provides nutrition counseling to people in the community who are battling life-threatening illnesses such as cancer, renal disease, and HIV/AIDS. Volunteer opportunities are always available. Visit their official website for more information.

Back On My Feet Philadelphia

Back On My Feet uses exercise, specifically running, to help those experiencing homelessness feel better about themselves so they can make changes in their lives for the better. The program’s success is measured by how many members obtaining independence through employment, job training, and housing. With Back On My Feet operating in 11 chapters nationwide, nearly half of their members are making life-changing improvements.

Bethesda Project

In 1979,  Reverend Domenic Rossi came into contact with a group of women who were homeless in Center City, Philadelphia. Along with his prayer group, the Reverend rented these women an apartment on 12th and Sansom streets where they had the shelter and safety. With homelessness on the rise, the all-volunteer group saw a need for more housing like the first, and opened a house at 11th and Spruce. Later, Bethesda Project became a registered non-profit organization, and has since been dedicated to the care, protection, and nurturing of homeless men and women. With over 13 sites throughout the Philadelphia area, Bethesda Project proudly serves over 2,500 people in need.


There are still two more days left to participate in National Hunger & Homelessness Awareness Week. Local businesses such as Schmear It Food Truck, Moon + Arrow and Buffalo Wing Wings are donating a portion of their proceeds from purchases made during this week to towards the Bethesda Project. For the month of November, The Blind Pig is selling $1 paper houses with proceeds benefiting Bethesda Project. For a full list of participating locations, you can visit the Bethesda Project website.


Image by Back On My Feet

Back On My Feet is also hosting a Sneaker Week. You can choose to participate for one day, all week or for the month of November. Invite family, friends, employees, and customers to donate $5 or $10 to wear sneakers. Donate the proceeds to Back On My Feet, which will put the funds towards NHHAW.


How are you making a difference this week? Are there other events we should know about? Let us know!