Imagine spending the Christmas season sleeping outdoors on the
cold, hard streets of Manhattan, lacking the most basic human
necessities – a sad reality for too many New Yorkers.
St. John’s University students have been doing their part to help,
joining with the Midnight Run Program each week to distribute
clothes and sandwiches to the hungry and homeless.
“It brings you back to reality,” said Hynreckie O’Hara ’14CPS, who
has been participating since his freshman year. “We travel into
Manhattan at night and are always alarmed to see so many people in
such great need, sleeping out on the streets. It’s jarring to
realize that they’re sleeping right outside tall buildings where
fabulously wealthy people live and work. It makes you realize how
much we take for granted.”
In addition to making the sandwiches and packing the supplies,
students meet and interact with the individuals they are serving.
Coming face-to-face with poverty is a transformative experience,
and the students learn – through weekly reflections – the huge
impact they make by giving of their time and resources.
“The trips become personal,” O’Hara continued. “I’ve always known
that there was a significant homelessness problem in the city, but
it didn’t become tangible to me until I joined Midnight Run and got
to know these people in need. The weekly experience can sometimes
be heartbreaking, but one thing is clear: to take a few moments to
bring joy and happiness to these men and women is something I’ll
Through the generous support of alumni and friends, St. John’s
students have numerous opportunities like the Midnight Run program
to carry out their spirit of service. Please consider making a gift
today to allow them to continue to make a difference in their