Sacred Heart

Social Ministries

Creating hope, opportunity and action

Sacred Heart Community Service is a non-denominational, non-profit organization which provides integrated services onsite free of charge to all in need. The programs offered are in three main categories: Essential Services (food, clothing, housing, and utility assistance), Self Sufficiency (education, family support, and employment), and Policy and Organization (training low income volunteers to work together to address the needs of their community).

Holy Spirit Parish supports and volunteers for many of the programs at Sacred Heart. Below is a list of ongoing and current opportunities to serve.

Thanksgiving & Christmas Volunteer Opportunities

Open your hearts during the holidays and help out at Sacred Heart Community Service. Many hands, large and small, are needed to volunteer for their Thanksgiving and Christmas programs.

These are wonderful ways in which you and your family can give the most precious gift of all…the GIFT of TIME.

Please follow the link below to sign up! The spots go very quickly. PLEASE NOTE: one spot per person.  You must sign up every person who will be participating. If you have any questions, please contact Mary Jane Vitkovich at

FAMILY FRIENDLY DAY – Children ages 6 and older, accompanied by a parent, are invited to come make Thanksgiving more special for those in need. You will be making Thanksgiving cards, bundling utensils for Thanksgiving dinner and bagging produce in small groups.
Saturday November 13th – 8:30am – 10:30am

FOOD PACKING – Thanksgiving: Thousands of boxes are packed and stacked this day.  Sacred Heart has limited the age of volunteers to ages 9 and up.  Children 9-13 years old must be accompanied by an adult.
Saturday, November 23 – 8:30am – 11:30am

FOOD DISTRIBUTION – Thanksgiving: Thousands of filled boxes will be distributed to customers on site. You will be standing, and/or lifting or performing other customer service duties. Due to lifting requirements, Sacred Heart has limited the age to 16 and up.
Monday, November 25th – 8:15am – 11:15am
Tuesday, November 26th – 8:15am – 11:00am
Wednesday, November 27th – 8:15am – 11:00am

FOOD DISTRIBUTION – Christmas: Thousands of filled boxes will be distributed to customers on site.You will be standing, and/or lifting or performing other customer service duties. Due to lifting requirements, Sacred Heart has limited the age to 16 and up.
Wednesday, December 18th – 8:15am -11:00am
Thursday, December 19th – 8:00am -11:00am

TOYBOX SETUP: The Learning Center will become a “Toy Box”filled with new unwrapped toys. Toys will need to be sorted and organized for the room.  Due to time constraints, Sacred Heart has limited the age of the volunteers to 9 and up. Children 9-13 years old must be accompanied by an adult.
Saturday, December 21st – 8:30am-11:30am                                                        

TOY DISTRIBUTION: A very heartwarming day for all!! Volunteers are needed to assist parents (think of yourself as an “elf”) as they pick out toys to bring home for their children. May also provide other customer service duties. Sacred Heart has limited the age to 16 and up.
 Monday, December 23rd – 8:30am – 11:45am
Tuesday, December 24th – 8:30am-11:45am


Sign Up

Turkeys & Tarps for Sacred Heart

The Thanksgiving and Christmas seasons are opportunities for us to celebrate the good gifts God has given us. For many, the holiday season is a special time to serve the poor and to share our blessings with those who need it. We have an opportunity to do a small thing by providing a turkey for dinner or tarps for those in need.

Each year Sacred Heart Community Service provides groceries for a turkey dinner to over 10,000 people with the help of $20 donations received from Holy Spirit parishioners. Last year we raised over $10,500 to support those in need at Sacred Heart. We purchased over 1000 tarps to support our neighbors who do not have adequate or available shelter from the cold and rain that the winter months bring.

We will be accepting donations after all masses the weekend of November 2-3 and November 9-10.

To help make this drive run smoothly, we are asking for 3 volunteers after each mass on those weekends. Many hands make for
a light workload. If you could spare a half hour of your time after mass we could use your help. Please click on the link below.

If you have any questions, please contact Maria Pecota at

Sign Up


Donate Online

Survival Sacks

We gather on the first and third Thursdays of the month to distribute Survival Sacks, organize supplies, make hygiene kits, and fill backpacks. Sacks are distributed to those who are homeless and living on the streets of San Jose, usually about 50 on each distribution day.

We meet at Sacred Heart at 8:45am and finish up about 10:45am. We hope you will consider joining us for the following dates:

November 7th & November 21st

Questions? Please contact Tom Burgei and Patty O’Neil at

Sign Up

JobLink Employment Assistance Program

JobLink provides employment assistance and financial coaching to help individuals build a pathway to economic self-sufficiency. We connect job seekers to peer networks, skill development, and resources to achieve (and maintain) long-term employment.

JobLink can help with resumes, preparing for interviews, finding employment opportunities, and more. Volunteer to help others build a brighter future.

Monday – Thursday: 9am-3pm
Friday: 9am-12pm

Contact Elena Agostino if you are interested in helping!

Pack a Back 2019 is HERE!

Every fall, Sacred Heart distributes backpacks filled with supplies to children who would not otherwise have the materials they need to start the school year. Starting the school year with tools for success makes a huge difference in students’ confidence and attitude toward learning. Backpacks and supplies impact not only the student but the whole family. With a bulk of parents’ paychecks going to housing costs, little is left for essential items like school supplies. This year, Sacred Heart will give out 3,300 filled backpacks. Holy Spirit Parish has generously supported the Pack a Back campaign over the years. You and your family can be part of this important ministry by donating school supplies and/or volunteering with Holy Spirit Parish at Sacred Heart. Filled backpacks today nurture the leaders of tomorrow!

Volunteers will help sort, pack, and distribute supplies and backpacks. Online signups are open now! Please click here to sign up for your slot.

Here are some important dates:

Our shifts are set and our volunteer days are as follows:
• Distribution Day at Sacred Heart: August 9 (ages 16 and up)

We hope you can participate in this drive by donating and/or volunteering!

Please contact Alison Gibbons Chardos with any questions at


Pack a Back Wish List:

• New Back Packs for any age- No Red or Blue

(Please consider donating a sturdy gray or black backpack for a teen. To keep all kids safe from negative associations with certain colors, teens are only given black or gray backpacks. High school students trying to get ahead have lots of books to carry and the need is great for sturdy black or gray backpacks.)

• Scientific Calculators

• Ear buds

• Glue Sticks

• Pocket Folders

• Rulers

• Spiral Notebooks

• Packs of Wide Ruled Paper

• Crayons

• Ballpoint Pens

• Pencils & Erasers

• Highlighters

• Note Cards

• Scissors

• Markers

• USB Sticks

• Three Ring Binders

• And much more! — for a full list, please visit

Sacred Heart Community Service also has a wish list on Amazon. On the Amazon website, Search “Find a List or Registry” and enter “Sacred Heart Community Service.” You can even have your order delivered directly to Sacred Heart!


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