Questions or comments? Please feel free to email the volunteer department at



Come hang with us!

There’s still time to register for our first ever El Mercadito Mixer happening tomorrow, Wednesday, March 29, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.


The El Mercadito Mixer, presented by the Logan Square Chamber of Commerce, is a fun and FREE community event. We’ll talk about volunteering and how to make a difference in our community. 

Oh, and we’ll also provide light appetizers, beer and wine. See you there!



​​Old National Bank is giving away $500,000 to nonprofits that receive the most nominations now through Friday, March 31.

They will give $15,000 to the top overall vote recipient and $5,000 to the top vote recipient in each of the following areas: Illinois, Northwest Indiana, Iowa, and Southeast Wisconsin communities.

It takes less than 30 seconds to vote!

You can cast one vote per day, per email address, through March 31. Please cast your vote and help Nourishing Hope win!


Did you know that many current Nourishing Hope staff members started as volunteers?

You could be next!

We are currently hiring for multiple positions:

  • Home delivery program coordinator 
  • Clinical therapist 
  • Individual giving manager 

Click here to have a look!


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​​Volunteer Appreciation Month is right around the corner, in April, which means it is time to celebrate YOU!


We are excited to announce that we will be having a party at each of our four sites to demonstrate just how much we value your support. Please click the link below for the party you plan to attend!

For questions, please reach out to

We hope to see you there!


​​Get your tickets today!

The End Hunger Social, hosted by our Young Leaders Board, will take place on Thursday, May 4, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Joy District in River North (112 W. Hubbard St). There will be silent auction prizes, food and cocktails, and entertainment!

We need everyone's support to hit our goal of raising more than $60,000 toward our mission. Buy tickets and learn about sponsorship opportunities at

All attendees must be 21 and over.

Early bird tickets are available now! Hurry to get yours before April 1!

Get your tickets today!


Starting April 10, we'll be limiting the distribution to 150 households in total — 75 monthly choice and 75 monthly express. As part of this change, we’re also eliminating weekly produce boxes.

We’re making this change in order to improve the overall experience at El Mercadito and to ensure that families have an ample supply of fresh, healthy food.

We will continue to distribute food three days a week at El Mercadito: Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m, and all volunteer shift times will remain the same.

We're still in constant need of volunteers at El Mercadito. Our colleagues Omar, Gillian, and Isaiah have cultivated such a warm and fun atmosphere there. Please sign up for a shift and bring a friend!

Thank you for your continued support to help ensure our neighbors have the best experience.



March is National Social Work Month, so we are taking the time to celebrate our rockstar social workers! Nourishing Hope employs 5 full-time social workers who provide free mental health counseling to our neighbors – an integral part of Nourishing Hope’s mission of providing “Food for today, and hope for tomorrow."

Take some time to learn more about three of our social workers: Kate, Nicole and Marina.


How many years have you been a social worker?

Since 2012, so 11 years! 

What made you interested in the field of social work?

One of my favorite professors in college was on the board at Sarah's Inn and suggested I volunteer there.

I completed the 40 hour domestic violence training and started volunteering with their Partner Abuse Intervention Program, which is a program targeted towards perpetrators of domestic violence. I really enjoyed the work and decided to go to grad school. There's so many directions you can go with an MSW, so it seemed like a good choice while I still figured out what I wanted to do. 

What do you wish more people knew about being a social worker?

Many times in my career I've heard my work described as "waving a magic wand." It's absolutely not waving a magic wand or being "nice." It's helping clients navigate complex, and often broken systems. It's advocating for resources for clients and for ourselves. It's juggling sometimes really large caseloads and competing priorities. 

Just for fun: what is your coffee/hot beverage order?

 Red eye.


How many years have you been a social worker for?

I graduated in spring 2020, so coming up on 3 years!

What made you interested in the field of social work?

My undergraduate degree in psychology showed me how much I am drawn to serving others in their journey toward mental wellness and "living their best life." I've witnessed the power of seeing the strengths in others and their potential for growth and wholeness, and I feel I am best able to collaborate with them on that journey as a social worker (and mental health clinician). 

What do you wish more people knew about being a social worker?

It's common for people to think about social workers as helping people on an individual (person-to-person) level. However, social work is also about supporting progress toward healthier communities as a whole and advocating for legislation and policies as necessary. 

Just for fun: what is your coffee/hot beverage order?

Honestly, it's typically black coffee. If I'm feeling fancy though, an oat milk latte.


How many years have you been a social worker for?

I've been in the field since 2019, when I started my MSW program. I've been a neighborhood organizer for Mental Health Justice in Chicago, then I worked with the Chicago Women's Health Center as a therapy intern, so I've seen the spectrum of work that a social worker can accomplish.

What made you interested in the field of social work?

I've always been drawn to explorations of the human experience. I completed my undergrad degree in Psychology but felt that Social Work values mirrored how I felt about working with people most. The three that stand out the most to me are: social justice, dignity and worth of the person, importance of human relationships. I want to see and understand as much as I can about the big picture in someone's life and then walk alongside them to get to a place they feel is where they need to be.

What do you wish more people knew about being a social worker?

Our work is tough, and so are we! Anyone can join the field and learn something new about themselves.

Just for fun: what is your coffee/hot beverage order?

Iced triple oat milk latte with vanilla and cinnamon powder.


This month’s volunteer spotlight is Joel K.!

Joel (pictured at left with Omar) has spent the last three winters serving as a bilingual intake volunteer at El Mercadito and we could not be more grateful for his help.

When asked what he enjoys about volunteering at Nourishing Hope, Joel said: “It is a privilege to be part of a much-needed, community-focused program that each day is created anew by a super professional and caring staff, Omar and Gillian (and many wonderful fellow volunteers).”

Joel, who is retired, enjoys gardening and other outdoor activities when not volunteering at El Mercadito. We would particularly like to shout out Joel for having never lost an express cart — a huge feat!

Thank you so much for your volunteerism, Joel. We appreciate you more than you know! 


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Nourishing Hope

1716 W. Hubbard St.

Chicago, IL 60622

(773) 525-1777


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