Operation Sandwich has become an annual project for the Women’s Ministry at the church we’ve recently started attending. Having never attempted to make 800 sandwiches in an evening, I was really looking forward to participating.
The Urban Ministry Center in Charlotte distributes around 800 sandwiches every day to the homeless in Charlotte.
Churches and other groups reserve a date to make and donate those sandwiches.
They ask for 800 sandwiches. Meat (with cheese, if desired), egg salad, and peanut butter and jelly.
The Women’s Ministry Team believes in letting God dictate the final number. This year it was 1132. He knows better than we do!
How we did it:
- For about 4 weeks prior the team advertised the event and asked for donations of baggies, bread, peanut butter, jelly, lunch meat, cheese, mayo packets, and cash (if you didn’t have the time or desire to shop).
- Perishables were collected and refrigerated Thursday and Friday morning before our event on Friday night. That allowed the team to purchase any supplies that had not yet been donated. Though there was a quick run for more bread during the event.
- Stations were set up around the room.
At each station:
- Two women made sandwiches.
- One woman placed them in the baggies.
- A fourth woman wrote the kind of sandwich on the baggies (prior to stuffing), placed the sandwiches in the boxes, and kept a running total.
It was similar to the Operation Christmas Child Processing Center.
Our Women’s Ministry Team Leader shared the history of the event briefly with the women. It’s a really neat God story. You’ll have to come help next year – maybe they’ll share it again. *wink
We had a time of prayer over the sandwiches and for the recipients. We also had a time of praise and thanksgiving at the end after totaling up the number of sandwiches.
What we learned:
- Cheaper bread tears easily when you try to spread peanut butter and jelly on it.
- Jelly spreads a bit easier with a spoon.
- Our peanut butter and jelly donations far outweighed the sandwich meat donations. (I know what I’ll bring next year!)
Other details to note:
- We had a table with snacks that women had brought.
- Tables were covered with plastic tablecloths making clean-up a breeze.
- Disposable gloves (affiliate link) were available for those who wanted to use them – as was plenty of soap to keep our hands clean!
- We all wore name tags! 🙂
- Boxes were collected to tote the sandwiches and refrigerated space was borrowed from a local soup kitchen.
- Multiple knives, spoons, and plates were placed at each station.
- Jelly jars can be stubborn to open!
It was a very fellowship-friendly event. We had a great time visiting as we made the sandwiches.
Some of your women may get a little competitive with the other stations. I’ll let you guess whether or not I did! LOL
The event was planned for 1 ½ hours, but took a little closer to 2.
This was a very non-threatening event – great for bringing visitors to. And great for all ages! We invited our High School and Middle School girls to join us and several did.
You may have a ministry in your community that does something similar.
Or you may decide to make sandwiches and pass them out to the homeless in your town.
Your turn to share: Have you done something similar? If not, do you think this is a mission project your women would like to tackle?
Be sure to check out these other mission project ideas: