Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Men's Clothing Needed

Our Community Thrift Store, Martha's Outfitters is running desperately low on men’s clothing, especially men’s pants. Martha's Table is reaching out to all of you to ask you to spread the word among friends and family to see if we can generate some donations. As you may know, in addition to selling clothes at the store, we have folks in need who are referred to Martha’s Outfitters who can receive clothes for free. Because they often travel from distant corners of the city, it is very important that we have an inventory of clothes for them.

If you’ve donated clothes before, you probably know that we accept clean clothes that are on hangers or neatly folded in paper bags or boxes. If you would like a copy of our donation policy, please email

Thanks in advance for your help.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Friday's Heroes: Martha's Table

Thanks to all the staff, volunteers and Martha's Table kids and teens that made this segment so great!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Hats Off to Proper Topper!

July 11th - July 25th

Proper Topper is lending Martha’s Table a hand by collecting men’s and women’s clothing for Martha’s Outfitters! Proper Topper is a charming little shop that collects and sells a beautiful collection of gifts, accessories, clothing, jewelry, children’s items, and, of course, hats!

They are hosting this event at the Georgetown shop, located on the corner of Wisconsin Ave. and P St.

Check out their site for more information:

and their blog:

So stop by Proper Topper’s Georgetown Shop, drop off your no-longer-needed items and gently worn clothes, and get some quality shopping done at their Patio Sale!

On behalf of Martha's Outfitters and all those we serve, we thank you, Proper Topper!

Friday, June 25, 2010

The Infant Classrooms Head Out for a Field Trip!

The infant classrooms prepared to head to the aquarium today, smartly dressed in brand-new Martha's Table t-shirts! Staff, volunteers, and parents prepared the infants for their big trip, and we were lucky enough to capture some cute pics before they headed to the metro! Enjoy!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Community Champion Award

Please join us in congratulating Demetrius Recachinas, who is receiving the Community Champions Award from the Washington Mystics Woman's Basketball Team and Chevy Chase Bank. He will be honored at halftime of tonight’s game.

Chevy Chase Bank is one of The Mystics sponsors, and with them the Mystics look to honor individuals for giving back to their community through community service, promoting awareness, and helping others.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Meet Ed Groark

Ed Groark is Martha's Table's Sears Chef Challenge participant. He chose Martha's Table as the charity he would like to support for the Sears Chef Challenge. I asked Ed why he chose Martha's Table. View Ed Groark Sears page here.

Why I am drawn to Martha’s Table

My experiences with Martha’s Table go back many years to when I escorted groups of suburban school kids to work in the food preparation area where they performed the magic of turning donated food into meals for low-income and homeless families and individuals. I’ve always been so impressed by how Martha’s Table is able to do so much with so little. They do this with the help of 10,000 volunteers each year through their never-ending commitment to continually find new sources of donated food and to stay open 365 days a year.

When I was selected as one of 24 chefs in the U.S. by Sears to compete in their ‘best chef’ Sears Chef Challenge competition and I learned we could win cash awards for a food charity of our choice, I knew there was only one organization I wanted to compete for. In the first elimination round going on now, I have the opportunity to win $5,000 for Martha’s Table, and if I go all the way to the top, I can win as much as $20,000 for Martha’s Table. Wouldn’t you like to help me and help Martha’s Table?

My involvement with Martha’s Table has another dimension as well. This month Michelle Obama kicked off her ‘Chefs Move to Schools’ program asking chefs to adopt a school to go into their classrooms to talk to children about healthy eating and making good food choices. I am one of 1,000 chefs who signed up, and of course my adopted school is Martha’s Table, where there are over 300 children from pre-school through high school who receive at least one meal a day. I will be working with the Martha’s Table team (who know a great deal about healthy eating) to develop a program that teaches kids where food comes from, what healthy foods they didn’t know they liked, and how to make healthy snacks for themselves. I can’t wait share my skills and experiences with these promising young children. It’s a win – win all around.

Sears Chef Challenge


4 Cities. 24 Chefs. 300 Million Americans. One Deserving Charity.

The Sears Chef Challenge aims to find the nation's next up and coming chef while raising money for the nation's food banks (Martha's Table!). And we need YOUR help to find America's next great chef.

A total of 24 chefs in four cities: New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C will compete by completing a variety of culinary challenges, culminating in the Sears Chef Challenge Championship Finals at the Kenmore Live Studio in Chicago. The chefs who progress toward the crucial semi-final stage will be decided by YOU, the online voters.

In addition, each chef will be paired with a food bank or food related charity in their home cities and given the opportunity to raise money for their communities.

Each chef will complete his or her challenge at special live events at Sears stores in their home towns; each chef will post their challenge videos, recipes, and more to the Chef Challenge site as well as their respective Facebook and Twitter pages to help you decide which chef you'd like to see in the Semi-Finals. (See Martha's Table Chef, Ed Groark at the link below).

The competition will consist of two rounds, each with a quarter-final and semi-final stage.

Round 1 voting begins JUNE 26th

Meet our participating chef online at ED GROARK, and then vote online starting JUNE 26th. The chef with the most votes from each city wins $5,000 for their chosen food pantry or food related charity and moves on to the live semi-finals in Chicago!

Ed Groark's Sears Chef Challenge Page

Friday, June 11, 2010

Martha’s Table Daycare Achieves National Accreditation

We are proud to announce that Martha’s Table just received word from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) granting accreditation status to our Child Development Center. Added to our existing national accreditation for our school-age programs, we are very excited to receive this confirmation of the high quality continuum of care we are providing to our children and their families. Especially because of the many challenges our children and families face, we believe they deserve the best. In addition, accreditation will bring additional opportunities to our daycare and will help us sustain this excellence.

Achieving accreditation has been a four-year, organization-wide effort that has required dedication and hard work from all of Martha’s Table. Please join me in congratulating the staff at Martha’s Table, especially Simone Johnson, Director of the Child Development Center and her staff, for what their efforts have produced. The Daycare staff in particular had to make significant personal commitments to this goal. For many of them, it
meant a return to college or going to college for the first time to achieve the requisite expertise to teach in an accredited dayc
are. I also have been incredibly impressed by the teamwork and willingness to pitch in displayed by all the other departments at Martha’s Table.

Martha’s Table could not have done this without a tremendous amount of support from the community. Volunteers, donors, partner agencies, and the families we serve all worked together to make accreditation possible. On behalf of all of us at Martha’s Table, we thank you.

Lindsey Buss, President & CEO

Friday, May 28, 2010

Building A Partnership

Martha's Table has a new partnership with Pathways to Housing.

Pathways to Housing
Seeks to transform individual lives by ending homelessness and supporting recovery for those with psychiatric disabilities. They believe housing is a basic human right, and aspire to change the practice of homeless services by:

Providing immediate access to permanent independent apartments, without preconditions
Setting the standard for services driven by consumer choice that support recovery and community integration
Conducting research to find innovative solutions and best practices for those who suffer from mental illness and homelessness.

How Martha's Table Helps
Martha's Table provides grocery baskets and clothing once a month to Pathways clients to help with their immediate needs of food and clothing. Providing these items as a part of Pathways permanent supportive housing is an effort to be a part of the solution of homelessness, one person at a time. This partnership is still young, initially we started by giving away about 47 grocery baskets a month within the first 2 months that number has almost doubled to our current 82 baskets a month. Pathways to Housing, Housing First Program services over 700 people. With the support of donors and volunteers we could eventually work to provide grocery bags to all Pathways Housing First clients.

Please visit their website to find out more about Pathways to Housing

Monday, May 24, 2010

A Night Out With the Obama's

It was such an honor to be invited to the White House for the Mexico State Dinner. I was incredibly impressed and appreciative that the First Lady made such a public expression of her message of inclusion. To include the nonprofit community at such a high profile event speaks volumes about her commitment to our work. What a privilege to be there with Maria from Mary’s Center and Scott from Miriam’s Kitchen.

I also am grateful to the incredible work of our families, clients, staff, volunteers, donors and other supporters whose success made the invitation possible.

The event itself was nothing short of magical. While waiting in the receiving line for President Obama and Mrs. Obama and President Calderon and Mrs. Zavala, we got to have a very nice chat with the couple in front of us, the Pelossi’s. Our dinner table included Gail King, Newark Mayor Cory Booker and Transportation Secretary LaHood and his wife. Everybody was incredibly nice and warm. My favorite part of dinner was the ceviche. My wife liked the dessert the best.

As we went into the tent for the entertainment portion, you could only say, “Wow.” The decorations of butterflies and massive hanging flower plants were incredible. Along the way, we got the chance to meet Attorney General Eric Holder and his wife, Sharon Malone. At our table for the performances, we were excited to meet and thank Luis Moreno, the President of the Inter-American Development Bank, one of Martha’s Table’s funders! The performances continued to take the night to another level. If you have not heard of the guitarist duo, Rodrigo y Gabriela, make your way quickly to ITunes. Beyonce was beyond words. She is a larger than life singer and performer and with her 15-piece band and laser show, she was over the top.

As I try to come down from the amazing evening, I am very grateful to Mrs. Obama for thinking of inviting the nonprofit community and for inviting Martha’s Table. Of course, what she does with her enthusiasm and energy on the issues that are so important to us, children, youth, hunger, nutrition, community service, is immeasurable. As I told her at the White House, she makes our jobs easier.

I also want to thank, once again, the incredible family at Martha’s Table that has created the type of place that would receive such an honor.

Lindsey Buss

President and CEO, Martha's Table

Photos of the event are above.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Martha's Table at State Dinner!

Tonight, Martha's Table President, Lindsey Buss will attend the White House state dinner as a special guest of First Lady Michelle Obama. On Monday, The Washington Post came to Martha's Table to get the inside scoop on the special invitees. Please read the article below.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Giving Them Strength By: Alex Morrison

Giving Them Strength: A Healthier Course for Martha's Table from Alex Morrison on Vimeo.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Martha's Table Happy Hour

You have been directed here by mistake. I entered the wrong link on the email blast about our upcoming Happy Hour at Cork Wine Bar. To purchase tickets please click on this link below and purchase tickets through Network for Good.

Sorry for the inconvenience.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Martha's Table Video - featuring Ms. Louise!

This was a video done by a journalism student in December of 2008, it touches on the fantasstic story of Ms. Louise.

Feeding Hope on Main Street: Martha's Table from Tom Lyons on Vimeo.

Volcanoes are still exploding!

Last April I blogged about the after-school programs 1st Annual Science Fair. This past week the children in our elementary and middle school programs were at it again. I was a judge for about 16 projects and found that the kids had really gotten into the experiments again this year. Some of the projects that stood out were

  • 5 year olds explaining the idea of density!
  • Finding out the science behind cleaning up oil spills
  • "Fungus on the Rise" - describing where and why fungus grows.
All of the children did a fantastic job and spent a lot of time learning about there experiments and creating artistic displays. There was even a volcano with fake grass growing all around the base.

Great job again this year. I am so proud of how much time and energy the kids put into their experiments.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Save the Date Volunteers!!

Please register,

Friday, February 26, 2010

City Paper: Best Of Poll

Every year the City Paper does a Best Of 2010 Poll. With over 10,000 volunteers, several driverse volunteer opportunities and a Presidential visit, I think Martha's Table may be the best place to volunteer in DC.

Now we have to prove it to City Paper readers.

Click on this Link- City Paper: Best of Poll and scroll down to "People and Places" only a few options are available but if you click on the "34 more", you will see "Best Place to Volunteer"
Vote for Martha's Table today!

Martha's Table in the News

Martha's Table staff has been featured in a few article recently. Please click on the following links.

Martha's Table: Cooking for a Cause - Washington Post

The 3 minute Interview: Lindsey Buss - The Washington Examiner

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Neighborhood braves blizzards to help Martha's Table stay open

(U Street)

Martha’s Table stayed open during the historic blizzards that shut the city down last week due to the committed efforts of many people. We are grateful to them all. Even when the storms were at their worst, people were coming to Martha’s Table in need and, each and every day, there were staff and volunteers here to welcome and serve them. In addition, on most days the food vans went out, the clothing room was open, and we distributed food, hot tea, sweaters, gloves, hats, warm socks, long johns, and blankets. We also provided hot tea to a city warming center. This all was being done while simultaneously clearing our sidewalk and alley of snow to ensure our clients could get to us and we could get our vans out to provide services. It is hard to say thank you to everyone who kept Martha’s Table going over the last 10 days, but I want to try.

One advantage of having people living in the community working and volunteering at Martha’s Table was demonstrated as staff like Roseinia, Martha, and Demetri and volunteers like Jimmy, Blue, Duan, Jamaal and Greg were here on the heaviest days of the storms. Other volunteers who helped us prepare and serve food and work in the clothing room when no one else could get in included Marie, Laura, James, Muriel, Robin, Sandra, Connie, Marnie, Mila and Ghazal. A lot of different van crews were cobbled together and they included Kris, John, James, Carol, and Bill, Larry and Keith from the Louie Clark Group. Additional staff onsite were Jimmy, Fred, Robert, Mr. Perez, Mr. Torres, Monet, Inge, Twanda, Kim, Desiree, and Inge. Snowed-in staff also helped us by coordinating things from afar, including Zarinah, Valerie and Ann. Some of the most impressive work surrounded our crew of snow shovelers. This included several youth from the neighborhood, like Duan, Jamaal and James, a new neighbor Greg, an old neighbor, Jerome, and Americorps and Citiyear volunteers who responded to the request we posted on Facebook. We are especially grateful for the response we received almost a year ago to a request on our wishlist.

Last Spring, for the first time in our 30 years, Martha’s Table received a snow blower as a donation. The timing of that gift could not have been better.

I am truly in awe of the dedication to service displayed by our volunteers and staff. Great job everyone, and thank you very much.

Lindsey Buss, President & CEO of Martha's Table

Friday, January 8, 2010

"Do You Grow Pizza Here?"

Martha's Table's Elementary program's kids have been a part of Share Our Strength's Operation Frontline.
The article explains...

"For the last few months these kids have been slicing, baking, touching and smelling all kinds of new foods and recipes. They're learning as part of an afterschool program that's up and running in cities around the country. It was started by Share Our Strength, a non-profit leader in fighting hunger and poor nutrition. Teaming up with volunteer chefs, in what the group dubs "Operation Frontline," the group has enrolled more than 288,000 children in nutrition-education classes. In Washington, D.C., a partner organization, the Capital Area Food Bank, organizes and staffs the class with registered dietitians. A big part of the program is teaching kids how to use good ingredients to make simple, healthy food — all while staying within a budget."

Recently, the children were able to visit the White House garden as a part Operation Frontline. Please listen or read the story here. Note the great photos of our kids.