Nonprofit Borrower Success Story: Medard's House - Working Capital Loan

"Post-COVID has been tough for our students. Medard’s House youth center has been instrumental in helping kids return to a normal life. The Garden To Table program has been the most successful program to date at Medard’s House, and has grown so much that our new kitchen director comes in every week. He has 8 students competing in a competition that involves learning how to grow herbs, learning about their nutritional value and how to cook with these herbs. In the spring, they will be mentors on the Food Truck. We don't know what we would do without our new kitchen!!!! It is pulling in families and community members who are interested in helping. For example, we have a women’s garden club, local farmers, the school aquaponics program and people in the community bringing us seedlings and supplies! The partnerships that have been created is the best outcome Medard’s House could have hoped for.

Thanks to all who have supported this effort. Your investment has and continues to change the lives of these kids and our community. Thank you.”

~ Saudra Colello, Executive Director of Medard’s House


Medard’s House believes that our youth should be able to directly find the support they need for life’s toughest challenges within their own community. The LENDonate loan was used to renovate an old “church type” kitchen. The space was enlarged to create room for youth activities and training and is now ADA compliant.


This kitchen renovation supports their Garden-to-Table Program which started in the Spring of 2022. Students learn about and plant their own seedlings. In the summertime, they plant and tend the Medard’s House garden. In the fall, students harvest the crops and learn how to prepare them in the newly renovated learning kitchen. The kids will learn how to safely use, prepare, and eat the fresh food, as well as learn the techniques to preserve large crops through blanching, canning, and pickling.


LENDonate is proud to have supported this impactful life skills learning program!


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Medard's House - Garden to Table Youth Program

Medard's House: Who We Are

Some of our youth members learning how to cook chili from scratch in our kitchen.

Medard’s House is a Christian youth outreach that:

Use of Proceeds: Kitchen Renovations

These funds will be used to renovate the kitchen and bring it up to date. Currently it is an old “church type” kitchen with a small galley and no room for youth activities and training. All the appliances will be updated and it will enable us to make it ADA compliant.
Our kitchen Director, Glenda, takes pride in sharing her cooking skills with any of our kids who are interested in learning.
Our staff and volunteers meet monthly to talk about the youth they serve and the most effective ways to serve them.
Of course baking cookies for our fundraiser is always a student favorite because they get to sample the finished product!

Investment Summary

Who can participate?

Why support this program?

Many hands make light work in our makeshift kitchen.

This Garden To Table program has been in the planning stages for a couple of years. It is a newly approved EITC program in the state of Pennsylvania and we are proud to be offering it.


We cannot spend EITC funds for construction or capital expenses, so this loan will make the difference in when we can start this proposed program that is MUCH anticipated. If we can deliver this program to our families and the community we serve, we not only will gain great credibility for what we are doing, but we will be providing a program that is not offered in this area.


In addition, we believe this will set us up for success in many areas of our youth mission because of the credibility we will gain as an organization.

History of Medard's House

Medard Kowalski’s peers described him as “everyone’s best friend”, especially the group of about 35 teens who met informally after school in the Camp Hill home of Saundra Colello. There was no formal program at Colello’s house: just a hot meal, a sense of family, shooting hoops, faith and connection. Others began to notice this connection: unlikely groups of teens were eating lunch together, bullying was confronted with love, and the circle of friendship grew. Then, tragedy struck. Medard, an avid outdoorsman, lost his life in a canoeing accident. His body would not be recovered for three agonizing months. During those dark months, there was a light — it was the community magnetized by the search for Medard. It is that connection, that light, which has become Medard’s lasting legacy. After the tragedy, the Kowalski’s and Saundra Colello made it their mission to formalize that extended family model to act as a light for others and provide a web of supports to teens, enabling them to better cope with transitions and stressors during this critical life stage. Since 2008, Medard’s House has offered such support to teens wherever they could meet….homes, parks, and rented community rooms. Medard’s House was formally created in 2015 as a 501(c)(3) organization. In 2017, we moved into our permanent home, a donated church building, where our program continues to serve the community.