SCRANTON – Saint Francis of Assisi Kitchen in Scranton has begun the 46th annual Host-for-a-Day campaign to support its mission of providing a free daily meal and other services to needy men, women and children in the area.

For a donation of $100 or more, an individual, family, business, community organization or faith-based group can help to fund the day’s meal. Various other sponsorship levels are also available, starting at $500.

In effect, each contributor becomes a “host” for a day. Contributors may then select a date on which they, or someone they designate or memorialize, will be recognized as helping to provide that meal.

Saint Francis of Assisi Kitchen has launched its 2024 Host-for-a-Day campaign, which is the primary means of financial support for the Kitchen’s mission to provide a free daily meal and other services to area needy. Pictured from left are Advisory Board member Stephanie Grudis-Whisner, campaign chair; Kitchen Executive Director Rob Williams; and Advisory Board President Michele Bannon.

Financial contributions to the Kitchen also help to fund other programs such as a Client-Choice Food Pantry and Free Clothing Store, and weekly meals at parish locations and high-rise housing buildings in Carbondale and Olyphant, which has now expanded to Roaring Brook Township.

In October the Kitchen’s Free Mobile Clothing Trailer began visiting various locations to bring clothing items to those in need who might not be able to come to the Scranton campus.

And recently the Kitchen entered a “Code Blue” collaboration with the City of Scranton and Keystone Mission. When the temperature gets below 20 degrees, the Kitchen provides hot soup and a hot sandwich to homeless folks welcomed to shelter at Weston Field.

“We are constantly looking at ways we can be of service to those in need,” said Rob Williams, Kitchen executive director. “In fact we are now engaging in a visioning process to explore how we might be able to offer even more assistance. We are excited to see what the possibilities could be.”

Stephanie Grudis-Whisner, a member of the Kitchen’s Advisory Board, is chairing the 2024 Host-for-a-Day campaign and leading the effort with her fellow board members.

“It is inspiring to think about how many people are fed and have other needs met through the efforts of the staff and volunteers at the Kitchen,” she said. “And of course this is only possible because of the support we receive from so many individuals and organizations, particularly through the Host for a Day campaign.”

Recent contributors to the campaign are receiving an appeal directly from the Kitchen through the mail or will be contacted by members of the Kitchen’s Advisory Board.

Host for a Day gifts can also be made by calling the Kitchen at (570) 342 5556, or sending a check to Saint Francis of Assisi Kitchen, 500 Penn Avenue, Scranton PA 18509. Donations can also be made online at: or

This year the celebration that concludes the campaign will be held at Fiorelli’s in Peckville on Wednesday, April 10, beginning at 6 p.m. Each contributor and a guest is invited to attend. RSVPs are required by March 30 to confirm attendance and an accurate meal count.

Those who would like to sponsor the reception are asked to call the Kitchen at (570) 342-5556.