Reversing the Rise of Hunger

What may seem like just another corner that we pass through on our route to work, is actually a corner which hides a secret that the blinded eye may never see.  The corner of Stanwix Street and the Boulevard of the Allies is the beacon of hope for hundreds each and every day.  This corner is the home of the Red Door.

Saint Mary of Mercy Church, founded in 1870 and located in the heart of downtown Pittsburgh, provides several kinds of assistance to the people in need within the city.  Their oldest assistance program is the Red Door Program.  This program, which began during the Great Depression, provides a bag lunch to those looking for a meal.  These lunches are distributed every day of the week, except Sundays, from 10:30 - 11:30 a.m.  The Red Door Program also provides warm soup, pastries, and breads throughout the fall/winter months, as well as popsicles and juices in the summer/spring months.  The lunches are placed in brown or plastic bags where those in need can grab-n-go.

If it weren’t for the dozens of volunteers who spend their mornings preparing the lunches, those who wander the streets of Pittsburgh would have nowhere to turn for their meals.  The meal they are provided with at The Red Door may be the only meal they eat for the whole day, so the role the volunteers play each and every day is crucial.

On Tuesday, August 6, 2019, dozens of employees here at Schneider Downs were given the opportunity by the Community Impact Committee to take our turn in making an impact in the community.  Starting at 7:30 am, sandwiches were prepared, cookies and snacks were packed, and bags were filled until over 175 complete lunches were ready to be delivered.  At 9 am, one intern, five employees, and two Schneider Downs family members arrived at The Red Door.  With lunches in hand, we were warmly welcomed by the five volunteers already preparing lunches for the next day. 

Red Door Coordinator, Heidi Potter, gave a tour and overview of The Red Door’s Mission before opening the door to those eager for food.  Many had begun lining up at the door over an hour before the door opened at 10:30 am.  After a moment of prayer, the sidewalk was filled with smiles from both the volunteers and those receiving their meals.  A simple “Hello” evoked conversations about life, family, hardships, and miracles that those who were struggling faced on a daily basis.  While deeper connections were forming, one of the regular and wise guests at The Red Door, whose name is Sarah, stood back and took in all the efforts that were being made by the Schneider Downs volunteers.  Sarah has always said, “We see miracles around us every day.” As she looked at the helpers before her that morning she said, “All here are miracles and they give us hope.” 

The Red Door continues to impact not only the lives of those in the community who are struggling, but also the lives of those who volunteer.  When the Schneider Downs volunteers returned to the office many were asked how the experience was.  One phrase seemed to be the common response; “The experience was eye-opening.”  It truly was an example of living our Firm Mission Statement…Working together every day to make our Firm, Clients, and Community better!!!

If you would like to learn more about The Red Door or are interested in donating or volunteering, please contact any member of the SD Community Cares Committee or Ms. Heidi Potter, Red Door Coordinator, at

You’ve heard our thoughts… We’d like to hear yours

The Schneider Downs Our Thoughts On blog exists to create a dialogue on issues that are important to organizations and individuals. While we enjoy sharing our ideas and insights, we’re especially interested in what you may have to say. If you have a question or a comment about this article – or any article from the Our Thoughts On blog – we hope you’ll share it with us. After all, a dialogue is an exchange of ideas, and we’d like to hear from you. Email us at

Material discussed is meant for informational purposes only, and it is not to be construed as investment, tax, or legal advice. Please note that individual situations can vary. Therefore, this information should be relied upon when coordinated with individual professional advice.

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