Come in
and be welcome!

The Friday Café is open every Friday from 1-5pm,
September through June at First Church in Cambridge.

Our Mission

The Friday Café at First Church in Cambridge is a welcoming space where homeless and housed neighbors can gather and get to know each other. It offers food and coffee, rest and resources to people living on the margins, but most importantly, it offers community. At the Friday Café, people experiencing a wide variety of life circumstances can relax, share a meal, and talk together as friends.

For those whose lives are lived on streets and in shelters, the Friday Café offers a rare oasis of safety and welcome. It is also a place of genuine encounter. Our unique focus is on fostering connection. By bringing people together in an informal setting, we create space where fears and misconceptions about homelessness can be transformed into understanding.


Volunteers are the lifeblood of the Friday Café.
f you have a heart to serve, there is a place for you here!
We offer two volunteer shifts each Friday:

Kitchen Prep Shift


For this shift, volunteers arrive two hours before opening to ready the day’s food. You’ll transform donated food into a delicious meal for our community, doing everything from making coffee, to cutting up fruit for salad, to preparing salads, designing custom pizzas. Your help will make the Friday Café not just a relaxing, loving place, but a delicious one too!

Opening Shift


Before guests arrive, volunteers help prepare the Friday Café for visitors: setting up tables and chairs, sorting and putting out donations, putting out the day’s food.

After guests arrive, volunteers offer a simple ministry of presence, sharing conversation and lunch with guests. Volunteers may also be asked to help with tasks such as counting guests as they arrive, monitoring the food and beverage tables, handing out clothing donations.

Closing Shift


From their arrival until about 5 o’clock, closing shift volunteers offer a simple ministry of presence, sharing a conversation and lunch with guests. Volunteers may also be asked to help with tasks such as counting guests as they arrive, monitoring the food and beverage tables, handing out clothing donations.

At 5, volunteers help close up the Friday Café: putting away tables and chairs, washing dishes, and returning donations to their storage places.

Rev. Kate Layzer

Director of the Friday Café

Kate Beers

Leadership Team Member

Laurie Friedman

Leadership Team Member

Devin Spring Hansen

Leadership Team Member

Rev. Tom Hathaway

Leadership Team Member

Aaron Hume

Leadership Team Member

Barbara McLean

Leadership Team Member

Raphaela Mueller

Leadership Team Member

Community Partners

The Friday Café would like to thank all of the organizations that make our ministry possible.

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11 Garden Street
Cambridge, MA 02138

Directions & Parking

First Church in Cambridge is located at 11 Garden Street, which is at the corner of Garden and Mason streets, just across Mason Street from the old Radcliffe campus and just across Garden Street from the historic Cambridge Common. We are right next door to the Sheraton Commander Hotel.

Public Transit

The closest T stop is HARVARD SQUARE, on the Red Line. For those able to climb stairs: Follow signs to the Church Street exit, turn right at the top of the stairs, cross Church Street, and take your next left on Garden Street. (Others please refer to the map.) Continue on Garden Street until you come to the corner of Mason Street. The church is also readily accessible by bus.


Parking is a challenge. Those with Cambridge resident stickers can usually find a spot along the residential streets near the church; others will need to rely on meters. The rate for Cambridge parking meters is $1.50 for 2 hours (payable by quarters or Passport app), and parking is strictly enforced, which makes parking for a Friday Café shift a challenge. Public transportation may well be your best bet.


Your financial contribution will sustain the work of the Friday Café to feed the hungry, provide shelter from the cold, and build community among neighbors from all walks of life.

Donate By Check

Check made payable to “First Church in Cambridge” with “Friday Café” in the memo line can be sent to:

First Church in Cambridge
Attn: Rev. Kate Layzer
11 Garden Street
Cambridge, MA 02138

Donate Online

To donate online, click the button below, then enter the amount of your gift in the box next to the Friday Café:


Donate by Text

Just text “$xxx Friday Cafe” (e.g. $200 Friday Cafe) to 617-841-8044. If this is your first time using First Church’s secure text donation number, you will need to register.