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Guest Spotlight: Saida

02.23.22 | Food for the Soul, Guest Stories, Voices of our Community

At Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen & Food Pantry, we know that each guest that visits us has their own story. One guest who we’ve known for a long time is Saida.

Saida has lived in Midtown Manhattan for 45 years, and for the last three years, she’s been a regular guest at our weekly Food Pantry. Before that, Saida attended our daily soup kitchen service.

A former caterer and usher, Saida worked hard to support her four children as they grew up. Despite having a full-time job, she was still forced to bring her kids to the soup kitchen on days when schools were closed, and they didn’t have access to a hot lunch from school.  

Thanks to our generous and welcoming community, Saida’s children are able to look back fondly on their time coming to Holy Apostles for a meal, a warm welcome, and a helping hand. Saida told us that the Holy Apostles community “has a piece of her family’s heart.”  

Although her older sons have moved out of state to start their own families, Saida has two daughters and one grandson who still live with her. “I do everything I can to support them,” she told us, “and I wouldn’t be able to do that if it wasn’t for all of this food.”  

“All of this, at the grocery store? That would be so expensive,” Saida said, gesturing to the bags she picked up from the pantry. “Fresh produce, especially this time of year, costs much more than we can pay.” 

Saida’s eldest daughter passed the bar exam this month, and she could not be prouder. “It’s because of you that they can succeed like this,” she said. “Otherwise, I would not have been able to support them through it.”

Sarah Marcantonio

Sarah Marcantonio

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