“I am the mashed potato and ham guy,” jokes Irving Burday of Middleton who has spent several years in the kitchen at My Brother’s Table preparing meals for over 350 people who have nowhere to go at Christmas. His wife Claire helps wraps presents which are given to the guests at the annual gathering. “It is such a worthy cause. Working with Barry makes it a great experience,” notes Burday, who sticks around with Barry to make the potatoes after the kitchen crew’s shift ends.
Barry is Barry Silverman from Peabody, who will be overseeing the Christmas Day event for the 26th year. “Barry is very organized,” notes Burday, who says that Silverman seamlessly orchestrates volunteers in the kitchen and dining areas with clear instruction and inspiration.
“Everybody’s heart is in the right place,” Silverman says of the cadre of volunteers. “Sometimes people who have been fed end up helping out when they are at a better place in their life,” says Silverman, who treats people as if they were at a five-star restaurant and makes sure they are enjoying the experience.
“Barry runs the whole show,” notes Dianne Kuzia Hills, executive director of My Brother’s Table. “It is our busiest day of the year,” she says, noting that while many organizations dole out meals on Thanksgiving, My Brother’s Table is the only group that does on Christmas. “People really look forward to it,” says Kuzia Hills who is appreciative of all the volunteers who show up each year. “Volunteer’s send us notes and donations.”
To volunteer, contact Barry Silverman at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 978-532-5465.