Johns Hopkins Gazette: October 9, 1995

On The United Way:  Serving Our Daily Bread

     Every day, hundreds of people depend upon  the services of
Our Daily Bread for their meals. Located in the 300 block of
Cathedral Street, across from the main branch of the Enoch Pratt
Free Library, it relies on dozens of volunteers daily for the
myriad jobs associated with feeding those in need.

     Roger Westgate is one of the volunteers.

     Westgate has been a faculty member and administrator in the
G.W.C. Whiting School of Engineering since 1966. He is currently
the school's  associate dean for academic affairs and continues
to teach in the Department of Electrical and Computer
Engineering. As he juggles his various academic and family
responsibilities, Westgate has always tried to make time to
volunteer in the community. He was, for a long time, a judge for
the Maryland Student Science Fair. And now, on several Saturdays
throughout the year, he lends a hand at Our Daily Bread, a
program of Catholic Charities that provides hot, nutritious
lunches for 800 to 1,000 persons daily and breakfast Monday
through Saturday.

     Westgate's involvement with Our Daily Bread began several
years ago when his then 15-year-old daughter, Susan, was looking
for an organization for which to volunteer in fulfillment of her
high school's community service requirement. A neighbor
voluntered regularly at Our Daily Bread, and that sounded good to

     "My wife and I felt she might be a little young for that
particular experience, so rather than dissuade her, we decided to
go with her. And we got hooked," Westgate says. 

     His family continues its volunteer effort at Our Daily Bread
long after Sue's school credits have been satisfied. Now their
time is coordinated through their church. And Westgate says they
are called upon to work on Saturday mornings at the end of
selected months.

     "It's not unusual for about 35 of us to help serve 1,000
people," he says. "That number includes a lot of families, a lot
of children."

     Quite often he chooses to serve the food, including tending
to individual requests for providing vegetarian meals. 

     "I'm often struck by the individuality and independence of
the people who come to eat in dignity," he says. "You get a real
sense of satisfaction when you see how your involvement affects
people who are otherwise without food."

Go back to Previous Page

Go to Gazette Homepage