Volunteer Opportunities

The Schenectady Inner City Ministry (SICM) is an ecumenical partnership, founded in 1967, of 50 congregations (15 denominations) for ministries of social service and social justice.  Individual programs operate at differing locations and times. 

SICM Food Program:

Emergency Food Pantry,
839 Albany Street, Schenectady,

The Food Pantry provides emergency food to people of Schenectady County who are in need. In 2015, the pantry served 47,715 individuals.  The equivalent of a total of 429,435 meals were served in 2015.

Over 130 volunteers were involved in the program, donating over 15,000 hours.  The SICM Food Program needs volunteers to:

-greet guests/file cards
-intake/interview guests
-pack groceries/repack bulk items
-work the produce counter
-distribute food at service window
-help load/unload food items at pantry
-sort food
-organize a food drive at your organization
-input computer data
-plant/weed/harvest at community gardens
-lobby/advocate special events

The pantry is open Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday each week, from 9:00 AM until capacity is met, and also on the last Thursday of the month for Mass Distribution.  Occasionally help is needed on other days, as well.  Consider working during your school vacations or if you have mornings free.  Volunteer once a month, once a week, or whatever fits your schedule.

Summer Meals

SICM serves free lunches in parks and various church lawns during the summer, to children and youth from infancy through age 18.  We served over 75,000 meals to hungry kids in 2015.  In Schenectady, 80% of our children now qualify for free or reduced rate lunches when school is in session, and too many of these kids would not have regular meals during the summer break. That’s where SICM and our tremendous teams of volunteers step in.

Last summer SICM served children and youth at more than 30 locations across the city, including at several of the city’s parks, including Steinmetz, Quackenbush, Jerry Burrell, Central, Hillhurst, Woodlawn and Wallingford.  Lunch was also provided at three of the city’s municipal housing locations: Yates Village, MacGathan Townhouses, and Steinmetz Homes. School sites include Lincoln Elementary (2 Robinson St.) and MLK School (918 Stanley St.).  Our church sites included Faith United Methodist Church (Eastern & Brandywine), Trinity Lutheran Church (Central State Street cluster, Furman Street),  Friendship House (955 State Street), and State Street Presbyterian Church (Catherine and State Streets),   Mt. Olivet (Wendell Ave.), Faith Deliverance Tabernacle (Ostrander St.), Bellevue Reformed (2000 Broadway) and Bethel AME (540 Mumford St.), Christ Centered Unity Missionary Baptist (113 S. Brandywine Ave.), First Reformed Church of Schenectady (8 North Church St.), New Bethel Church of God in Christ (2020 Broadway), New Day Christian Empowerment Center (1259 Chrisler Ave.), Refreshing Spring Church of God in Christ (327 Georgetta Dix Plaza), and The Bridge Christian Church (735 Crane Street).   Our remaining sites are: the Schenectady Public Library (Clinton St.), the Hamilton Hill Arts Center (Schenectady St.), and  Schenectady Museum (miSci) on Nott Terrance, as well as two mobile units that traveled to 15 different locations around the city.  Other sites operated in partnership with, but not by, SICM.

In 2015, we averaged serving more than 1,500 kids a day.  Over 650 volunteers from 66 congregations, non-profit groups and businesses served the meals and interacted with the children.

If you are interested in volunteering for the Summer Lunch Program, please contact the SICM Office after March 1 at 374-2683.


The annual CROP Walk is a celebration to fight hunger locally and overseas, and SICM is a lead organizer for the event.  Walkers find sponsors for a financial pledge.  The event is held the first Sunday in May.  More information can be found on the SICM website at www.sicm.us.


High school and college youth may participate in summer internships at SICM, working in a variety of areas and programs, including the Emergency Food Pantry, Summer Camp, and Home Furnishings. Most interns are sponsored by local SICM congregations.  For more information, see the Summer Programs tab under SICM Programs on the website, or contact Janet Mattis at jmattis@sicm.us or 374-2683.  Applications and position descriptions are usually posted to the website in early February.

Executive Director, Rev. Phillip N. Grigsby
Phone 518 374-2683 / Fax 518 382-1871

E-mail:  revphil@SICM.US
Website:  www.sicm.us