Before I moved to Florida I volunteered often for the North Texas Food Bank. Since my return, I haven’t had the chance to help them (short of asking for food donations for them during my holiday party), until today.
It may be hard for those of us that have so much and some of us that struggle with overeating to recognize that hunger does exist here in the North Texas area, but it does.
Hunger has a different face in the US as compared to third world countries. Still there are families that struggle to provide adequate food for their needs. Some that miss meals due to finances and children that fail to get adequate nutrition due to lack of education or money. More recently, pets have also been affected by the economic downturn.
The North Texas Food Bank has expanded its programs to meet the needs of North Texans. Since the economic downturn the need is greater and they have worked to provide services to make a difference in our community.
I reviewed their present services and was impressed with how much they have expanded their scope. They provide reduced price school meals and back packs of food for kids to take home for the weekend. They distribute cat and dog food (those that have lost jobs may not have the funds to keep their pets otherwise) and have programs for seniors as well.
In addition, they offer nutrition programs that target low income people educating them on how to provide balanced meals for their children. Food distribution is at the forefront of the role NTFB plays in our community
Today, I participated in a fun event that raised money for the NTFB. It was Shred Day in conjunction with Comerica Bank, Fox 4 and Iron Mountain. If you had sensitive documents that you needed to shred, you could come by the bank, offer a donation of food or money (or not if you couldn’t manage it) and Iron Mountain would shred your papers at no cost. We were also vying for the world record in paper shredded, so there was no limit on the amount of paper people could bring.
I arrived at 7am. The event was to start at 8 but already there was long line of cars and trucks waiting. At about 7:45 the flood gates opened. Some had a few boxes or bags of paper to shred. Others, filled flat beds or U-Haul trucks.
As volunteers we walked from car to car taking their food donations and placing them in bins for the food bank.
I love this type of event because you really see the best in people. The donations ranged from 0 to one can to boxes of food. Monetary donations ranged from the change in the bottom of someone’s purse to a 500 dollar check and maybe more.
People not only gave donations but often thanked us for volunteering to help the community. No one was impatient although the line was long and it was fun seeing people pull up with one hand on the wheel and the other holding a bag of food out the window for us to take (sometimes with the car still moving!)
As volunteers we worked together to not only collect the food but to help each other. At times we worked as a tag team and sometimes with more than two of us it looked more like a relay. I was there for 3 hours and we all agreed 3 hours seemed like 5. We worked hard and my newly healed thumb was hurting by the time I left and is feeling it now.
Here is the Fox News report and video. http://tinyurl.com/mebtdho
You might see a motley looking blonde tag teaming with another volunteer to take a food donation. That would be me!
I don’t know how much food was gathered or if they made the world record but no matter the outcome it was all good. People helping people. It was a great day!
I hope you will consider donating, food, time or money to help us help each other. http://web.ntfb.org/page.aspx?pid=272
I have signed up for their next event, Taste of the NFL. http://web.ntfb.org/page.aspx?pid=364
I have worked this event in years past and it was first rate. I am looking forward to it. Of course, I would love to see you there too whether as a participant or volunteer. You can smooze with the Cowboy’s and have some great “vittles’ prepared by celebrity chefs, all the while doing your part to feed the hungry.