THE BRIDGE OFFERS BASIC NEEDS AND SERVICES
Our kitchen currently serves in excess of 3000 meals per week. 85% of our food is donated from a variety of sources. 65% of this food is perishable and would have found its way to a dumpster if we weren’t able to “rescue” it through the resources of Operation Food Search and other food providers such as grocery stores, caterers, restaurants and civic groups.
Starting in April 2010, through the cooperation of Operation Food Search and the St. Louis Cardinals Baseball organization, The Bridge has received tons and tons of leftover food from Busch Stadium.
Restrooms and phones are available to the more than 650 people who come in and out of our facility each day. We recently started offering computer use for our guests who need to write resumes and apply for jobs or search for housing online.
The guest emergency pantry provides personal hygiene items, emergency clothing, socks, diapers and individually portioned emergency food.
The Bridge provides guests a USPS address, currently giving 726 people the opportunity to maintain personal relationships with family and friends and to establish contact of a business nature. (A permanent mailing address is a requirement for job applications.)
During the day, The Bridge offers shelter from the elements and a safe place to rest and connect with others.
There are many barriers to reestablishing one’s independence. At The Bridge, guests will find staff and volunteers to refer them to the agencies and organizations that can help them take their next step to self-sufficiency; to assist with replacement of personal identification documents like State IDs and birth certificates; and to provide a listening ear.
Human beings have an innate need for joy and laughter in their lives, no matter what their current circumstances. Because many of our guests consider each other family and The Bridge their community while they are waiting for “Home”, we celebrate holidays and birthdays together. Choirs, movies, board games, art projects and kids’ crafts can all be found on a given day happening in our dining hall. As in all families, there are times of mourning and sadness. We try to be there during these times, as well, to plan memorial services and funeral suppers.