Improving our Technology at Holy Apostles

03.22.22 | Food for the Soul, Volunteer Stories

At Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen and Food Pantry, we’re always trying to find ways to streamline our systems and make life easier for our guests. This year, we started an initiative to improve our check-in process for our Food Pantry.  

Until recently, when guests arrived at the Food Pantry, they gave their name to one of our volunteers to begin the check-in process. The volunteer would then look up the guest in the system and enter their information manually before making an appointment for the next week.  

Our new process helps guests get in and out of our doors quickly, allowing us to serve more individuals and families as the need in New York City continues to grow. Now, when a guest enters our Food Pantry, they hand their new Holy Apostles ID to a volunteer, who then scans the QR code on their ID. This process is faster and prevents user error.  

I spoke with Evalina, a volunteer who assisted Jay Alfaro, our Manager of Social Services, with the process of helping our guest obtain these new IDs with QR codes on them.  

When I asked Evalina to describe the process of working at the Food Pantry, she said it’s been “absolutely wholesome and fulfilling”. She also told us, “my heart has grown a couple sizes since I started here.”  

Evalina and all of our volunteers play a critical role in ensuring that our guests feel comfortable when they come to the Food Pantry. Evalina tries to make guests feel more comfortable by cracking a joke or telling guests to “strike a pose!” when she takes photos for their new IDs.  She shared that after a few weeks of volunteering here, some of the guests started to recognize her and greet her by name. “To share that mutual care and mutual recognition – it’s so special,” she said.  

One new process that has really benefited our guests is creating sheets of FAQs translated into the languages most spoken by our guests. With our guests, some volunteers face a language barrier, and these sheets allow for easier and more thorough communications. We’re always looking for volunteers who speak languages like Cantonese, Spanish, or Russian – if you’d like to volunteer your time in this way, please contact us today. 

Between the friendly faces of our volunteers and our new technology to improve wait times at the Pantry, we are committed to making sure that all feel welcome when they arrive at Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen.  

Sarah Marcantonio

Sarah Marcantonio


Stay current on activity at the Soup Kitchen, guest stories, thoughts from Clergy, news and events.

Subscribe to receive the latest news, events, volunteer opportunities, and more — right to your inbox.

Church of the Holy Apostles

We are an open, inclusive Christian Church celebrating in the Episcopal tradition.

Sunday Service is held 11AM (on site and via livestream). Weekday services are held on Zoom.


For Newcomers

Learn about our faith community and explore ways to connect with our work and worship.


Reflections on Holy Scripture from our Clergy.


Founded in 1844, with a focus on social activism and the desire for social justice.

Clergy, Staff & Vestry

The Vestry is the governing body of the Church of the Holy Apostles.


Music commands a strong presence at the Church of the Holy Apostles.

Space Rental

Host your next meeting or event in our landmark building.

Soup Kitchen & Pantry

Nourishing hungry New Yorkers since 1982 in an atmosphere of respect and hospitality.

Daily meal service

Serving a free, nutritious meal every weekday from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm.

Meal outreach

Distributing bagged breakfasts and lunches throughout Chelsea and Hell’s Kitchen.

About the soup kitchen

Learn more about our mission, our history, our performance, who we are, and what we do.

Pantry Program

Providing fresh and nutritious groceries to food-insecure New Yorkers.

Sunday Supper

Bridging generations and building community over a monthly family style meal.

Social Support

Meeting basic needs, stabilizing lives, and supporting individuals and families to achieve their goals.


Addressing the needs of the whole person through basic needs, counseling, and referrals.


Offering learning and skill-building opportunities.

Community Partnership

Partnering with others to expand the services offered to our guests.

Get Involved

Holy Apostles is a great place to channel your time, talents and generosity for good.


Make a difference in the lives of New Yorkers experiencing homelessness and hunger.


Join our efforts to serve others and provide for people who are vulnerable.


Your gift provides food, community, and hope to New Yorkers in need.

The Latest

Stay up-to-date on all happenings at Holy Apostles.

Food For The Soul

The official blog of Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen.

Voices of Our Community

Guest stories, poetry, and more.


See our calendar of events.

Church Pulpit Posts

Read weekly meditations written by our clergy.


Holy Apostles in the news.