Hands On Hartford

About Hands On Hartford

Our Mission:

Hands On Hartford, in partnership with others, strengthens community in Hartford by responding faithfully to people in need through programs that change lives and renew human possibility.

What We Do:

Hands On Hartford is a social service nonprofit organization that serves Hartford’s most economically challenged residents in the areas of food, housing, and health. We are also an affiliate of the Points of Light Global Network, which includes volunteer-mobilizing organizations located in nearly 40 countries around the world. To learn more about the Points of Light Global Network, visit www.pointsoflight.org/global-network.

Founded in 1969 as Center City Churches, the agency has had a longstanding commitment to providing respectful, comprehensive services with help from volunteers and community partnerships.

Our current services, reaching thousands of people annually, are:

MANNA Food and Neighborhood Services and Homeless Outreach Team

Hands On Hartford provides direct relief to thousands of Hartford neighbors each month. Through Gather55, the MANNA Community Pantry,  and the Backpack Nutrition Program for children, we provide meals and groceries to individuals and families facing food insecurity.  More information about Gather55, our restaurant open to all regardless of ability to pay, can be found at the Gather55 website.

Our Day Program and Neighborhood Services team also provide vital support through community connections, referrals, security deposit & utility assistance, basic health screening, nutrition education and employment & education expense assistance.

Working in partnership with Connecticut Harm Reduction Alliance, our Homeless Outreach Team connects with unsheltered individuals in the Hartford area on evenings and weekends to connect them to services, shelter and housing.

HOH Housing

HOH Housing provides individuals and families with:

  • Safe and affordable housing and related support services for folks living with complex health issues (including for those living with HIV/AIDS)
  • Supportive services to tenants at a Hartford affordable housing complex
  • Individualized housing case management and related support services through the Healthcare & Housing Project (CIHHN)

Faces of Homelessness Speakers’ Bureau

An alliance of concerned individuals who have experienced and continue to experience homelessness who speak out against this unjust reality by organizing speaking engagements hosted by a diverse range of community groups.

Community Engagement

None of these services would be possible without the dedication and support of volunteers. Our Community Engagement team places volunteers in one-time and ongoing positions with all of our programs, as well as organizing larger customized service projects, service learning immersions and “Dash for a Difference” events.

Hands On Hartford’s Licensed Shared Use Kitchen is available for members on an hourly basis, and enables start-up and small food businesses and entrepreneurs to scale up their operations before they are able to afford their own commercial kitchens.  Income from this venture supports Hands On Hartford’s direct service programs.  We are also a member of the Culinary Collaborative, providing advice and resources to beginning culinary businesses.

Non-Discrimination Statement  Hands On Hartford services are provided without discrimination based on age, race, ancestry, religious creed, color, sex (including pregnancy and sexual harassment), genetic information, gender identity and expression, marital status, sexual orientation, mental disability (past and present), national origin, intellectual impairment, learning disability or physical disability, including but not limited to blindness, criminal record.

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging: Hands On Hartford values and is committed to being a diverse, equitable and inclusive agency.  To meet that commitment, Hands on Hartford as adopted a DEI Plan to strengthen the agency’s understanding, capabilities, and confidence for connecting across cultural differences primarily race/ethnicity, age, gender identity, and neuro diversity; to maintain racial and gender diversity among staff, board and volunteers; to ensure that our recruitment, hiring, and staff support policies are created and implemented with a DEI lens; and that we ensure broad accessibility to our services, taking into account the diversity of those we serve.