Last Saturday morning, I met with the other students at Trinity Café so we could help serve breakfast to those in need and make their day brighter. When I drove into Trinity Café, I was immediately greeted by smiling faces and friendly people who told me where to park and enter the cafe. I saw a few children smiling and playing games while they were waiting outside for their meal. These children said hi to me and thanked me for volunteering, which foreshadowed how positive and impactful my service would be. I arrived at Trinity Café around half an hour before the café opened and there were already tons of people waiting outside, which shocked me because I didn’t realize the large number of hungry people in my community. For me, this service taught me a lot about hunger and need in my community and helped me understand the sheer number of people that struggle with hunger in my local area. I was shocked with how many people ate in the café during the hour time period that it was open. My table seated 6 people at a time and within that hour my partner and I probably served at least 18 people. We offered them drinks (coffee, water, hot tea, and chocolate milk) and got them cereal, a hot meal, and a fruit of their choice. Seeing the joy and gratitude radiate from their faces made me so happy because I knew my actions were directly changing the lives of others. Service elicits joy from the people who are serving and from the people who are being served and it is one of my favorite feelings because I know I am making a difference in my community. After we served breakfast, we cleaned up the café and went around the neighborhood and cleaned up trash. My group was sent to clean up by the local Dollar Store and we made a difference for the people who worked there. One of the employees came outside and thanked us for our service, which showed me that making a positive difference in someone’s life can be by doing something small. Overall, the Trinity Café was a fantastic experience and taught me the importance of serving my community and opening my eyes to the adversities in my community. I would strongly recommend serving with the Trinity Café because of the direct positive impact it has on the Tampa Bay community.

– Grace Brill