Homeless Shelter Chef


WINSTON-SELEM, NC – Every Monday morning you can find Josephine Truesdale in the kitchen for Samaritan services. This is not where she thought she would be until she struggled with homelessness in 1994.

“Sleeping outside, like at 13-16 degrees, sometimes you have nothing to eat,” Truesdale said she was homeless. “You can eat a pack of Nabs.”

What you need to know

  • Josephine Truesdale abused drugs for 20 years and five of them were homeless
  • She turned her life around and found a program to help her with addiction
  • After she cleared up, she found Samaritan Ministries, a homeless shelter and kitchen in Winston-Salem
  • Now she is cooking for other homeless people

She says she has been abusing drugs for 20 years and five of them have been homeless.

“I’m tired of being what my life was, and I called on the name of Jesus Christ,” Truesdale said. “I asked the Lord to show me where I could go to help someone other than myself, and he sent me here, and I’ve been doing it ever since.”

Truesdale found herself in Samaritan ministries in Winston-Salem and wanted to volunteer in any way. Growing up, I watched my mother cook.

“Just look for and study things, and then you can do everything yourself,” Truesdale said. “Just go into the kitchen and get started.”

It takes a lot to feed a crowd. The pasta and cheese dish she recently cooked probably had about a dozen boxes of pasta, but she says it’s worth it every time.

“When they look at you and say,‘ Thank you so much for the food you gave me today. Thank you so much for just saying “Good morning,” “Have a nice day,” she said, smiling.

Truesdale is a popular face in this community and has even attracted nationwide attention. “Good morning, America” flew her to New York in 2019 to honor her for her dedication and service.

“Oh, it was the most wonderful, but flying on a plane was absolutely wonderful. My first time on a plane, my god. That’s the only way to fly! “

Homeless Shelter Chef

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