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Marcel Digital Volunteers with Chicago Help Initiative

Marcel Digital employees volunteered with the Chicago Help Initiative this week to provide free, nutritious meals to more than 100 guests in the River North neighborhood. It was a great outing for a great cause, and it helped bring our employees together in the age of remote work. Through our ongoing commitment to philanthropy, Marcel has built a longstanding relationship with the Chicago Help Initiative and we're thrilled to share more about the meaningful work they're doing.

If you're unfamiliar, the Chicago Help Initiative coordinates volunteers to make, donate and deliver meals to food pantries and meal sites across the city. Every Wednesday, they meet in the dining room of Catholic Charities on 721 N. Lasalle St. to provide in-person and takeaway meals for underserved members of the community. Not only do they coordinate with a large volunteer base, they also work with local restaurants to provide rotating meals every week. The Marcel Team had the honor of working directly with founder Jacqueline Hayes to serve vegetarian cuisine from Ghareeb Nawaz, an area Indian Restaurant.

In addition to a free meal, Chicago Help Initiative also provides a practical gift to all guests in the form of a pair of socks, which is one of the most-commonly-requested items by shelters and food pantries. Due to ongoing COVID precautions, the dining room was limited to 78 guests, but the team also prepared an additional 75 takeaway meals for those who could not attend in person. Chicago Help Initiative has a social services department that operates out of Catholic Charities too. Beyond providing free meals, they assist with job, finance, and healthcare resources out of the same building. Guests can use these services to gain access to critical materials and information to help improve their circumstances.

Marcel Digital places high importance on giving back to our community in a variety of ways. Not just financially, but also physically. We recognize the importance of participating in various forms of philanthropy, all driven by the causes and foundations that are most important to our employees. If you or your organization would like to get involved with the Chicago Help Initiative, we highly recommend visiting their website here and reaching out.

We'd like to give a special thank you to Jacqueline and all of the organization's volunteers for helping us jump right in and make a meaningful impact this week. Take a look at the gallery below to see some of the fun we had serving our community. 

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Ben Swartz, Marcel Digital Founder + CEO (left) and Jacqueline C. Hayes, Founder and President of The Chicago Help Initiative (right)

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The Marcel Digital Team prepares over 150 boxed meals for the community

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Preparing takeaway meals step by step

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The full assembly line preparing well over 100 meals for the community

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Bagging takeaway meals for those who could not attend in person.

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Celebrating success!

  • Philanthropy

  • Digital Marketing

About the author

Dan Muller

Dan has a passion for finding creative solutions through writing, tech, and brand storytelling. On the Marcel Digital Blog, he highlights our latest philanthropy and company culture initiatives.