St. Columba is a distribution point for the emergency food bank. No one is turned away...unless we run out of food! We are open Wednesday and Friday mornings from 10:00am to Noon. During the growing season we also have fresh garden produce to add to the canned and dried food. We also offer human dignity bags (soap, TP, toothbrushes, toothpaste, and the like), diapers and wipes, and sometimes have bags specifically for the homeless that require no cooking.
One of the ongoing ministries of our St. Columba’s community is supporting Totem Middle School in our neighborhood where many of the students are low income and need our help. To do this, it has become a tradition for us to host a back to school breakfast for the dedicated teachers and staff at Totem who give so much of their time, energy and often their personal resources to educate these young people. As part of this event, we also raise money to purchase gift cards for each of the teachers to use toward classroom supplies.
A new project for Totem is helping with uniform needs. It an be difficult to find items that suit the colors of the school and also the religious requirmeents of the girls especially. We are making dresses to help. Donations towards costs are gratefully accepted as are extra hands to sew!
There are two ways to contribute financially:
- Click here to make an online donation of any amount.
- Put your donation in the offering plate on a Sunday morning, and please make sure it is marked “Totem Middle School Fundraiser.”
Come to my Garden
There are essentially two gardens at St. Columba. The produce from the one is distributed to the food bank patrons as well as the members. This is also where we grow flowers for the altar and wheat which our children and youth turn into communion bread. The other is signifiantly larger and is a true community garden. The Community Garden is sponsored by the International Rescue Committee’s (IRC) New Roots program on our land. There are 35 garden plots available to IRC clients many of whom have recently immigrated from the Congo, Bhutan and Latin America. IRC’s New Roots program focuses on food access and the nutritional needs of families upon arrival in the U.S., and builds on the agricultural experience of many new refugee and immigrant families by providing access to land, materials, and education for program participants to grow healthy food.
Reach-out Winter Shelter
Each spring and fall, St. Columba's hosts the ReachOut Winter Shelter, as part of their Federal Way program. We provide shelter for up to 25 men and women who would otherwise be without shelter during some of the toughest months of the year. St. Columba's volunteers come each night to open the doors, orient volunteers from other organizations who bring in hot meals, and spend hospitality time with shelter residents. We are glad to partner with ReachOut and Catholic Community Services to provide shelter from the cold for some of our most vulnerable neighbors.