Grace UMC Renews Its Commitment to Hesed House

Grace UMC has been a strong supporter of Hesed House since its inception in the 1980s. Located a mile south of downtown Aurora, the mission of Hesed House is to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, shelter the homeless, and give people the chance to hope again. It has become a national model for ending homelessness: one person, one family at a time. It is the second-largest homeless shelter in Illinois outside of Chicago. For decades, before COVID, faithful volunteers from Grace provided food, cooked and served breakfast, lunch and dinner each month at Hesed House. The volunteers cherished their interactions with the homeless guests while assisting with bed assignments, distributing toiletries and food. 

Since April 2020, COVID restrictions have prevented Grace volunteers from serving inside the facility. However, a group of volunteers continued to provide “ready to serve” hot meals and sack lunches prepared at Grace kitchen. These meals along with donated toiletries and bottled water have filled up a cargo van and have been delivered in time for dinner.

Starting in July 2021, Grace UMC will again be allowed to provide volunteers to serve inside Hesed House. In order to expand volunteer possibilities, the hot dinner and sack lunches will be prepared by volunteers in the Grace UMC kitchen and delivered to Hesed House for volunteers to serve.

Ways You Can Serve at Grace: 

  • Prepare hot meals and sack lunches at Grace UMC kitchen from 2 p.m.-5:30 p.m. (second Tuesday each month)

Ways You Can Serve at Hesed House: 

  • Make final dinner preparations, serve dinner, clean up, and other assignments from 6 p.m. - 9 p.m. (second Tuesday each month)
  • Prepare, serve, and clean up for breakfast from 4:30 a.m.– 7:30 a.m. (second Wednesday each month)

Sign up to volunteer at

Ways to Donate: 

  • Donate fruit and/or dessert items from 2 p.m.– 5 p.m. (second Tuesday each month)
  • Donate from the “current needs” of toiletry items, etc., as listed at

Donations of either food or other items can be dropped off in the Gathering Space at Grace UMC  in the cabinet marked “Hesed House” or at the Fellowship Hall entry before 5 p.m. on the second Tuesday of each month.

Contact Larry Hartman ( if you wish to contribute, volunteer or need more information.