SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) – The holiday season always seems to highlight people who are in need in the Bay Area with holiday meals an donations doled out by many non-profits.

The includes at the St. Anthony Foundation in San Francisco, as Executive Director Shari Roeseler said food service in the dining room is just one of the services they provide.

KCBS Interviews Shari Roeseler with St. Anthony Foundation:

“Our dining room continues to be our gateway program. We also have a medical clinic, a free clothing program, which is the largest in the city. We also have a 12-month recovery program for men, a social work center and a technology lab,” said Roeseler. “We also have a justice education volunteer and advocacy program and that brings in young people in particular, but also businesses that want to volunteer and do some hands-on work.”

Best known for serving everyone and anyone in need, Roeseler said St. Anthony has been feeding the hungry for decades.

“Our guests line up and come in. Every guest is welcomed. Whoever you are, whatever your condition, you are welcome,” she said. “When folks come, they are also referred to as guests. Our staff and volunteers think of everyone as a guest and treat them with that level of hospitality. They are able to eat as many meals as they need and some of them take food to go because there are some people in single room occupancy hotels who can’t get out for meals. For many folks, this is the only food they can access in a day.”

St. Anthony is unique because it is completely funded by private donations. Roeseler said they get most of the food donated through the San Francisco Food Bank. But they also hold curbside donation periods around the holidays where people can drive by and drop off food.

Because of the increased demand, Roeseler said they are going to be moving into a new building to accommodate the more than 3,000 meals they serve on average each day. She said they have seen about a 10-percent increase recently in the number of meals doled out.

You can hear KCBS In Depth, a weekly half-hour news interview, Saturdays at 5:30a.m. and Sundays at 8:30 a.m. and 8:30 p.m. on KCBS All News 740AM and 106.9FM.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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