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Open Table

As part of its promise to improve the health of the community, The MetroHealth System has adopted the Open Table model to provide a support system and resources to those in need of creating change in their lives.

Apply today and join a Table!

Open Table Brochure
About Open Table
As part of its promise to improve the health of the community, The MetroHealth System has adopted the Open Table model to provide a support system and resources to those in need of creating change in their lives
About Open Table
Frequently Asked Questions
Who is Open Table?
The Open Table is a non-profit organization that trains faith communities, community organizations business, government agencies and other sectors to implement the Open Table Model.
Frequently Asked Questions

Open Table

What is Open Table? 

Open Table is a grass-roots poverty transformation model, built on the principles of meaningful relationships and nonjudgment, and the importance of social capital.

Each Table is composed of a group of volunteers that make a year-long commitment to act as a team of life specialists, encouragers and advocates for an individual or family experiencing poverty or other complex challenges. Over the course of a year, the Table works together to set goals, foster accountability and implement a plan to create change. Table members network in their organizations and the community for resources to support the plan. Throughout the process, authentic, transformative relationships are built, resulting in personal growth and healing for everyone involved.


Why Open Table at MetroHealth?

Poverty, social isolation, and other social problems are inextricably linked to poor health outcomes. Innovative and multi-faceted solutions are essential to address these social determinants of health. Open Table represents one of the many initiatives under way at MetroHealth’s Institute for H.O.P.E. to improve the community conditions that impact health. 

The MetroHealth System adopted the Open Table model in 2018, and formed 15 Tables by the end of 2019, providing a support system and resources to those in need of creating change in their lives. MetroHealth is the first health system in the nation to adopt the model and use it on a larger population. 

New Tables will continue to launch throughout 2020, with training opportunities for new volunteers available throughout the year. 


Open Table Model 

The Open Table model is designed to create community and share social capital through relationships with those who are facing poverty and other life challenges. In collaboration with local community organizations and internal MetroHealth services, a program manager identifies individuals and families in need of support who are interested in receiving support from a Table. 

Community members, with a range of professional and personal experiences, are recruited to serve as Table Members and receive intensive training on the model, as well as ongoing guidance and support. Each Table is comprised of six to ten volunteers who commit to helping an individual or family for one year, including weekly meetings. The group acts as a team of supporters and advocates, using their professional and personal experiences to provide guidance in a non-judgmental space. 

Research on the Open Table model demonstrates positive change for individuals and families, including gains in employment and an improved sense of optimism for the future. Table Members were found to have gained valuable knowledge about poverty and report experiencing their own personal transformation as a result of participating. In addition, studies reveal sustained mutually beneficial relationships, continuing beyond the one-year commitment. 

For more information, visit:  https://www.theopentable.org


Support the Open Table Movement 

Ready to Apply? Open Table Application 

In addition to individual applicants, we welcome corporate, government, and faith-based partnerships which may include group volunteer opportunities, internal Tables, or onsite training and outreach.  

For those interested in the Open Table Model but are unable to serve, there are other opportunities for involvement. Open Table allows members in the community to “sponsor” a volunteer by paying for their Table fee. There are also opportunities to volunteer on the Open Table team and become involved in recruitment as well as the further stages of implementation. 

To learn more about serving on a MetroHealth Table or to find other ways to get involved, please email [email protected].

If you represent a community or faith-based organization serving individuals with complex challenges, and would like to become a referral partners, please email [email protected]

Additional resources