**Our Meal Host program is overseen by our full-time Night Managers (Matt & Sarah). Please contact them about possibilities, orientation and available spots. Note: for all other volunteer inquiries please contact our Volunteer Coordinator.
Dinner meals at Micah House are provided Monday through Friday at 6:00 p.m.
by our faithful core of volunteers. We call them Meal Hosts.
We are often looking for one or two new Meal Hosts at any given time. Here is some helpful information for those considering the role, as well as for those who are already Meal Hosts.
Who can I call for the latest update on accurate guest numbers?
Before 4:00 p.m. call 905-296-4387.
After 4:30 p.m. call Sarah at …
What if I can’t make it for 6:00 p.m.?
If you are going to be there by 6:15 we’ll simply wait, but if its going to be later than that you should call the Night Managers and/or the house line and let people know so that they can make other arrangements.
How much does a typical meal cost?
The price of groceries is going up all the time, but our experience shows you can prepare a colourful, nutritious meal for 12 guests, 2 Night Managers and yourselves (say 4) for $70 or less.
I want to be a Meal Host but I can’t afford to purchase the food myself. Can I still be a Meal Host?
Yes. Although the majority of our Meal Hosts will incur this expense, we are happy to do what we can to assist you in your service to newcomers.
Can I get a tax receipt for the food I purchase?
Yes. Save those receipts and give them to us altogether at the end of the calendar year. We can write a tax receipt to one person on your team.
What about halal meat?
Halal is a method of preparing meat that many of our muslim guests prefer. Halal is not any more expensive than regular meat and is readily available in your local grocery store. Two other options are also suitable; one, have a vegetarian meal (or option) and two, use Kosher meat products. Muslims find Kosher to be a very good alternative.
Where can I purchase halal products?
The Hamilton Farmer’s Market (downtown), several shops on James Street North, and Samir Foods (east end, Centennial at Queenston and also on Upper James Street near Mohawk Road) all offer inexpensive and delicious options. But halal products are also very common in your local supermarket.
I was told to expect a certain number of people but when I arrived there were fewer.
Our guests are required to be at every evening meal but occassionally make appointments that we are unaware of (usually they are looking for apartments). We have tools in place to maximize communication and minimize errors but errors still happen from time to time and we are grateful for your understanding in those instances. Any extra food usually gets eaten within one day.
Who should I contact if I see something in the house that needs repair or some sort of attention?
The Night Managers, Matt & Sarah, are always at the meal when they are able and you can share anything with them.
I prepared a great meal with all the extras but it did not seem to be appreciated. Do they really need what I am offering?
Yes. The nutrition you are providing is precisely what they need for mind and body.
Micah House guests come from all over the world, a variety of cultures and diets. We don’t all eat alike. Micah House recommends that you prepare a straightforward, plain meal, without additional sauces and such (see below).
Good foods to use: beef, chicken, fish, rice, potato, fresh vegetables, fresh fruits. Barbequed meats and make-your-own pizza is usually popular too.
Foods to stear away from: pasta, pork (all varities), most casseroles are too “blended together” for people to feel comfortable with.
Sauces & seasoning: Keep all sauces, gravies and strong seasonings on the side so that people can decide for themselves how much or whether they want to add them. Plain food is best – there’s always an option to dress it up, even if that means just adding ketchup.
It’s not always possible to separate out the seasoning from a recipe but try not to make any dish too spicy. Again, people can always add hot sauce, peppers or something else if they desire.
Dessert: Keep them simple and optional. Fresh-cut fruit, cookies, or yogurt.
“The Bottom Line”
If every meal was meat, rice/potato, vegetable they would be absolutely fine with that. Give them the option to add to things but otherwise keep it simple.
If you are interested in being a Meal Host please fill out our application and submit it along with two references and a police background check.