Local news and radio stations relay the news that food banks have a dire need to be restocked in order to
meet the growing needs of their clientele. Unfortunately with the unstable economy fueled by high unemployment that stubbornly resisting a downward trend in some areas, food banks have found they are unable to meet the food requests submitted daily. Families who never expected to cross the thresh hold of their local community food bank are now finding it necessary to ask for assistance to meet their weekly grocery needs. If we did a quick survey, most of us know families who are struggling to feed their families.
Contributions have Plummeted
As we see and hear media reports, food banks note that contributions have plummeted which negatively impacts the Food Bank’s ability to meet the needs of clients seeking assistance. To be sure, most people are so humiliated and devastated by their inability to adequately purchase sufficient food to meet their family’s needs. You can see pain and even embarrassment etched on their faces as they accept whatever food items are given, grateful that a pressing need as been met for a time.
How we can Help
Rather than dwell upon the dire food supply lack we can choose to consider what we all can do to alleviate the Food Banks’ dilemma of nearly bare shelves. Could it be that we could all help in some small way to restock the shelves of local food banks? How? We have listed some ways we can help restock our Food Banks to help them to meet their clients’ needs.
Contact your nearest food bank representative to determine what food items are needed. Then, as you do your weekly grocery shopping, challenge yourself to purchase just one or two extra food items to donate to your local food bank. If you have the resources to be able to give more, then do so of course. After a determined period of time, take your collected items to the food bank for restocking their shelves. Your office colleagues or club members may be interested in joining you in this effort if they are given the choice. You will be amazed at how the groceries will increase with minimal effort. I can assure you that no food bank will refuse any effort offered to restock their food shelves with grocery items for distribution to their community residents.
Gift card If grocery shopping does not appeal to you, consider giving your local food bank a gift card that can be used at a local supermarket or wholesale grocery warehouse to purchase food items to restock shelves. The food bank personnel can purchase the necessary items to restock the shelves. Such a gift is beneficial to the food bank and gives you satisfaction knowing that you have made a meaningful significant contribution to help alleviate hunger.
Monetary Donation A check or monetary donation is an appropriate gift to your local food bank. In most cases, your monetary gift may be tax deductible. Often food banks because of budgetary constraints cannot spend money to wage a full media blitz to promote their needs. Your monetary gift or check will go far in helping to meet the administrative expenses of running a food bank as well as purchasing food items.
Share your garden’s produce If you are a gardener, consider allocating a section of your garden to grow vegetables that will be given to the local food bank. During the growing season, any crop yield that can be donated would certainly be welcomed by the local food bank. If you belong to a communal garden group, perhaps some fellow gardeners would join in growing produce specifically for the food bank. Clients would certainly enjoy having fresh produce as part of their donated food items.
When I was a young Sunday School student, I remember being taught that Joy spelled Jesus first, Others next and Yourself last. That definition has always remained in my mind. Real joy is experienced not only in receiving but in giving of our resources. Sometimes the greatest joy is derived from giving out of our lack. Giving to a food bank is easy, uncomplicated and blesses so many while giving the giver unspeakable joy. Lend a hand to your local food bank and experience real JOY in meeting the needs of your fellow man.