Andy in the kitchen

/ Volunteer

Volunteer Andy Marber: Friendships keep him coming back – even from California

Andy Marber started volunteering at God’s Love We Deliver more than two decades ago. He learned of the organization from his companion, Drew Jewett who passed away from AIDS.

A Manhattan resident since 1978, Andy moved to Greenwich Village in 1986 and saw the AIDS crisis firsthand. “People were not just dying from this disease but were discriminated against,” he said. “People were losing their jobs and many times their families didn’t know how sick they were because of the fear surrounding AIDS.”

Andy started volunteering at God’s Love to honor Drew and everyone who was suffering from AIDS. “Working in the kitchen was cathartic,” he said. “It was comforting to actually do something that I knew was helping people who needed assistance so desperately both physically and emotionally.”

Andy became a member of the Wednesday 4-7 p.m. kitchen crew. In the early days, the volunteers chopped vegetables for the meals being prepared. Now he’s part of the line that packages meals being delivered. Over the years, he’s made incredible friendships that have kept him coming back to God’s Love. “It’s the people who make the experience so rewarding,” Andy explained.

“It’s my fellow volunteers and the God’s Love staff that make this place so special. Everyone here works incredibly hard.”

The volunteers on his shift have truly become friends. Meeting at God’s Love, individuals from Brooklyn, the Bronx, the Lower East side have come together for the purpose of helping others. Some have been together for 20 years. “This is an important part of my life. I love seeing the friends I’ve made over the years and catching up,” he said.

Even from quite a distance, Andy still makes it to the kitchen as often as he can. “I now spend quite a bit of time in Palm Springs, California, where I volunteer at a senior center kitchen and Meals On Wheels. But whenever I’m in New York, I try to get to God’s Love for my Wednesday shift.”

Andy explained that there’s no other organization like God’s Love that tailors meals for specific medical conditions. “I’ve watched the organization evolve and it’s incredible to see how it continues to serve more and more people,” he said. “I never feel like I’m doing enough and there are so many people doing more, but I’m happy that I’ve been involved and contributing for so long.”

Related Posts

+ View All