Gloria Dei Community Kitchen

The Community Kitchen is one of many ministries that members of Gloria Dei can become involved with. Currently overseen by Catholic Community Services, the Community Kitchen is run by 350+ volunteers of all faiths, practices, and ethnic groups, and includes a dedicated group of volunteers from Gloria Dei.

This ministry actually began at Gloria Dei in 1991. That year, Gloria Dei member Ann Quick saw an unmet need to help the homeless population of Olympia. Quick and other members of Gloria Dei sought a place where the homeless could retreat from the rain and cold. After initially securing a room at the Senior Center, the team started serving ramen noodles in Styrofoam cups. Since then the ministry has grown into a community-wide effort with teams of volunteers from a variety of organizations.

Gloria Dei Volunteers at the Community kitchen.

Currently the Gloria Dei Team helps prepare meals at the shelter every Friday, and their typical shift is from 9:00am to 1:00pm. Once the team arrives, they begin preparation of a “take-out lunch”. This includes preparing the main course, prepping a salad, a vegetable and fruit, as well as a bread product. If time allows the team will also do some additional cutting/chopping for future meals. After the “take out lunch” is provided to those in need (from 11:00 to Noon), the team then helps with clean-up. 

The food needed for the meal is provided by Catholic Community Services, and is obtained through a variety of special programs and donations.  In the summer fresh food is often harvested from St. Martin’s College gardens and other area gardens.

The Community Kitchen is currently serving out of a garage door at the Salvation Army at 824 5th Ave. SE, in Olympia. In 2023, the Gloria Dei team averaged 110 meals every Friday, serving a total of 5,698 people. 

The Gloria Dei team can always use volunteers both regular and substitutes. You don’t need a food handler’s card to join our team, and if needed you can sit while cutting/plating food!

If you are interested please contact Dee Dee Smith, Crew Leader, at (240) 599-6317 or