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hand Up PartnersContact:      L.C.Food Hub email

 In The News- Click here  Meet some of our cleaners- click here

Click Here to donate and please type "Hand Up Partners" in the note under the dollar amount!

Checks can be made out to Lancaster County Food Hub with Hand Up Partners in the memo and sent to

812 N. Queen St. Lancaster, PA 17603.

    Please consider donating to Hand Up Partners, a new partnership to the “My People Clean Up” program that  I started this past April. The program offers a $20 a day stipend to homeless individuals who clean designated parks, community areas and neighborhoods. The results thus far have been extremely positive for both my cleaners and the areas that are being enjoyed by our local community. To date we’ve paid out over $20,000 in stipends, provided solely by private donations, (There is no overhead, all money goes directly to this project.) Presently we are cleaning six parks (Linear, Branden, Binn’s Musser, Reservior, and Culliton) and three blocks of Water St. and the area around The Food hub at the cost of $1.080.00 a week. There are so many more of our homeless friends that would love to have this opportunity to be productive in our community and so many areas that would benefit from their efforts. Click Here to donate  or email me to discuss how to sponsor an area, Dave Costarella email

    The Lancaster County Food Hub provides food, clothing, shelter and many social services to our un-housed and low income residents of our community. After seeing the positive human transitions in our cleaners and the results of their work being enjoyed by so many, they offered to partner with this project in providing stability, growth and a way for donors to receive the documentation they need to itemize their contributions on their taxes.  They share my philosophy of making every individual a full partner in their own healing and journey to self-sufficiency, hence "Hand Up Partners".

   “SoWe” a residential led community organization in South West Lancaster, has enjoyed these successes and have now partnered with us to contribute the daily “hand Ups” to the cleaner of Culliton Park and to host and pay for group clean-ups by their outside residents in various neighborhoods throughout their area. They have embraced instead of chased our homeless population and have proved that residents and homeless can share the same space and be one community, and that if you you treat our homeless population with dignity many productive things will be able to happen. I hope our city and the world will use this area as an example.

This is a photo of some of the participants and neighbors at one of our group clean ups that we do every other week out of Culliton Park. They clean up the trash in all the neighborhoods surrounding the park, and then we share lunch at the park with the community. It's kind of beautiful.

   My hopes for this project is to provide many more of my homeless friends these opportunities to be productive in contributing to beautifying our community while using this as a stepping stone in gathering the strength to stand on their own.  

Thanks and so much love!   Dave Costarella

I did a self assessment of this project to look at it and think about how to proceed and improve it, please check out my notes of the 7 months since we started, and feel free to be in touch with any recommendations on improving or evolving this to be more effective and financially secure. Click here to read it.    You can email me here. Contact


Group clean ups continue as we can afford to. And after words we share a lunch with each other and the neighbors as one community. Here are some links from FB. You can see how it is growing in numbers and community sharing.

Group Clean up 9 -27 -23 Click here to view

Group clean up 10 -11 -23 Click here to view

Group clean up  10 -26 -23 Click here to view

Group clean up 11-8-23 Click here to view

Group Clean Up 11-22-23 Click here to view

Group Clean UP 12-6-23 Click here to view

Group Clean Up 12 -20-23 Click here to view



Press Room]

LNP Article on line Dec. 19th 2023 front page of paper Dec. 21 2023 Click here to read

One United Lancaster article June 21, 2023 Click here to read.

One United Lancaster article August 25, 2023 Click here to read.

Meet Some Of Our Cleaners
God’s Hot Little Mess
Meet Michelle,
   Known to many of the park’s residents and visitors as “Mom”, Michelle suffers from mental illness, crohn’s disease and drug addiction, while living in the dirt on top of the hill, overlooking the softball field.
   Michelle started cleaning Culliton Park in late April of this year, and has managed to transform the park, the residents, the neighbors, and this program into living proof that we are all humans and can coexist, communicate and share the same spaces as one community. As I watch her get stronger by the day, in every way, shape and form; (except for on crohn’s days) I continue to seek her council, (as so many do), in expanding this program, in the needs of specific human situations, and how to best help her.
   If you listen, even in her craziness, there is truth and a new way to look at things. If you allow her the time to be calm and ask her for specific advice you will be gifted with the most humane, truest and Godly way to handle it. She is respected and protected by the other residents and visitors who try to keep the park cleaner and enjoyable for all.
   In one of our discussions about how to promote this project and the need to put the human faces and stories of our cleaners out there, I was arguing that her issues were too private and that she was so vulnerable living outside, and that my job was to protect and not exploit my people. Michelle explained that she doesn’t know why, but God is using trash to change her life and the lives of so many around her, that she is well protected by the people around her and if God is ok with the way she is why would she want to hide it. When I told her I was going to entitle this “God’s Hot Little Mess”, she loved it.
    “SoWe” a residential led community organization in South West Lancaster, has enjoyed these successes and have now partnered with us to contribute the daily “hand Ups” to the cleaner of Culliton Park and to host and pay for weekly group clean-ups by their outside residents in various neighborhoods throughout their area.
    Michelle’s “quotes” that give me goose bumps
“The insanity of the well is the brokenness of the homeless”
“They treated us like animals so we acted as animals; they’re starting to treat us like human beings and we’re humans again.”
   This program is working on so many levels and is completely funded by your donations. Please help spread the word.

Click Here to donate and please type "Hand Up Partners" in the note under the dollar amount!

Binn's Park area has been one of our most challenging area to keep clean and keep cleaners. This year they had fenced off  most of the park and all residents and visitors were compact into a small section causing a constant flow of trash, and an over populated area, many thanks to our cleaners.

Meet Red


Red was our original Binn's Park cleaner and did a great job for three months, through a frustrating time in the area where the littering was relentless. Red had a great rapport with the folks that passed by and a smile for all.    Red ended up being picked up on parole violations for unpaid fines that you get when you sleep outside and endure the life that comes with it. He said that the judge told him he was a menace to society, I wish that I could have been able to speak on his behalf; obviously the judge doesn't know him. Red did a few months in the county while working in the kitchen, and is now living in a recovery house in town. Red is a good human being and I'm grateful for his efforts and proud to call him a friend.





Meet Louis
Louis, took over Red's spot and cleaned for a month until he started a real  part time job (which is now full time!) at a detail shop at Manheim auto auction. He was extremely happy to recieve the work boots needed to continue working there, He continued cleaning in the evenings, to earn the bus fare to get there. (He checks in to say hi and share his good fortune and hugs with us!)Ernest shared the cleaning with him and took over full time for a few weeks until he started working at a rehabilitation center for the elderly.       This is what "Hand Up Partners" is all about,.
   Each area cost $140.00 a a week in donations. Please help if you can.

Click Here to donate and please type "Hand Up Partners" in the note under the dollar amount!

Meet Ana
Ana was a resident of Culliton Park when she signed on to clean Reservoir Park, all the way across town with bucket, broom and grabber in hand. She did a great job for several weeks when she called and announced that she was putting herself into rehab. Though sorry to loose a great cleaner I was excited for her initiative to get back on her feet and told her to reach out when she got out, if she wanted to clean again.    She did and has been cleaning Brandon Park since the middle of July, and is now living in a recovery house and working on getting full time employment. Ana is a sweet human being, a hard worker and a pleasure to be around. If you need someone like that as an employee. Let me know and I'll put you in touch!    This is what "Hand Up Partners" is all about,.
Each area cost $140.00 a week in donations.     Ana is now working full time! Read up date here.    Click Here to donate and please type "Hand Up Partners" in the note under the dollar amount!

Big love and congratulations to Tony, our cleaner at Brandon Park, for landing and starting a new job this past week. Tony started cleaning after Ana  went to a full time job. Michelle "Mom of Culliton Park" is celebrating with us. Tony says that he wants to continue to take care of his park until his schedule won't allow it.    Big thanks to Carole Kirchner for putting the extra love, time and attention into this young man's life to get him and keep him on the good foot  Tony did a couple months in the county, and ended up as a resident at Culliton Park. Carole new he was a sweet kid and encouraged him and took him to job interviews; (you have about a two week window when you hit the streets to find something productive to do or get sucked into the homeless life) so we put Tony to cleaning as soon as there was an opening.  Shortly after, he was invited to stay at the Water Street Rescue Mission and has been working extremely hard to better his circumstances.     I wish there was something to offer everyone while their momentum was  still positively  strong. It is so much easier to keep it going than to change the direction and start from a hole.   Hand Up Partners is working on so many levels! Please help keep it alive    Thanks and so much love -DC Click Here to donate


This is Dave, the cleaner of Binns' Park area since early Sept. This man doesn't just do a great job there, he checks on the new porta -potty and cleans daily if needed, he also tries to bring peace while everyone is in survival mode as the temperatures drop, fighting for blankets. I've supplied him with several to hand out, in the early hours when I'm not available. (All donated by you guys) If you see this beautiful human being, please thank him for all that he does for all of us. So much love -DC Click Here to donate









a One Love World

A One Love World