On Saturday, Dan and I had signed up to volunteer at a local food bank - but there was not enough food donated to even use the help of volunteers! Can you believe that?
The weekend before a big holiday, especially a food-centered one like Thanksgiving, is typically a busy time for charities that feed the hungry. We were ready to help unload boxes, separate the corn from the green beans. On Friday afternoon, however, the food bank called and said, Thanks, but...we don't need you.
The Washington metro area is home to our country's highest earners and even when the job market was at its worst, D.C. was still rated as one of the best places to look for work. That's why I was really shocked to learn a food bank in our area hadn't received enough food - on the week before Thanksgiving!!!- to even warrant volunteers.
On the weekends I always watch CBS Sunday Morning - it's my all-time favorite morning news magazine and the theme of this week's show, in advance of Turkey Day, was food. There was a story on how hunger has come to Easy Street . Forsyth County in Georgia - the wealtiest county in its State, the thirtheenth wealthiest place in the U.S. - is also seeing an uptick in the patrons of its food bank.
If food banks in places where most people do earn decent livings are struggling, that means that food banks everywhere are likely hurting. Keep that in mind as you're shopping this week and the rest of the holiday season. If your grocery store has promotions to buy a box of pre-bagged food to be donated, or even a cart where you can toss in a few can goods....if you can, do it. When you consider charities to support at Christmas time, think of your local food banks - I think every little bit really will matter right now!
Because we couldn't give our time this weekend, Dan and I have to decided to make a donation to a food bank in our area. I'll be inclucing the sponsorship from last week's paid blog post with what we give, and for every comment left on this post, telling me about (or linking to!) your favorite charity or what you're doing this holiday season to help your community, I'll add an extra can good to take to the food bank.
I think it's always enough to just be grateful for what we have in life, but if you can give a little more than thanks this week, this holiday season...then find a way to do that, too!