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The Food Distribution

July 23rd, 2015 at 04:28 pm

I blogged a week or so ago how my daughter and another Jr. High FFA member raised some chickens to distribute at a local food pantry. The distribution was this last Saturday.

It was one of those life lesson events, not just for the kids, but also for the adults.

The food pantry runs from 10 - 11, the third Saturday of the month. We arrived at about 9:15 to get our station set up. Not surprisingly there was already a line. Some were faces I recognized, other I did not. Two were girls with whom I went to high school. I recognized one guy from the sex offenders list.

To paraphrase a quote that I've seen here on SA, and have heard elsewhere - rich people plan for tomorrow, poor people plan for today. Or, when your belly is full you have many problems, when your belly is empty you have only one.

Some of the customers appeared to feel entitled, the majority were grateful, or just kind of blank.

Just prior to the beginning of the distribution one of the lead volunteers asked my wife if she would like a box prepared for us. She declined, and was a little confused. The lead volunteer explained that volunteers have the first shot at food boxes. I eventually figured out that about 1/3 of the volunteers at the distribution would otherwise have been waiting in line. I suppose their personal pride demands that they "pay" for their food by volunteering. But, I suppose the also don't want to get shorted out of anything if the pantry runs out of an item. So, they get first shot at the boxes.

It was really hot and humid here on Saturday. The number of customers was down. It was probably too hot for some of the older customers to get out. At the end of the distribution one of the volunteers did deliver two boxes.

Next month the kids will distribute pork. I can't attend because I will be taking DS2 to a medical specialist appointment.

We're still not sure how we will get the pork processed. The head volunteer suggested that we get it all ground into bulk sausage in one-pound packages. Her thinking is that one pound packages are easier to distribute, and customers won't fight over different cuts. DW thinks its a shame to grind quality cuts into sausage. I think a good compromise would be to cut the loins into chops, package the chops into packages of two, and have everything else ground into sausage. We'll see.

The distribution was very worthwhile. I was reminded, as I should be once in a while, that I really do have a good life. After all, one of my worries is - how are we going to process some pork, and not - how am I going to find food to eat tonight.

7 Responses to “The Food Distribution ”

  1. Jenn Says:

    Thank you for this post. It puts my problem of the day into perspective.

  2. chloe Says:

    Thanks for your thoughtful and thought-provoking post. It's great that your daughter is involved in something like this!

  3. creditcardfree Says:

    Thanks for sharing! Not having a food is a problem I don't normally relate to.

  4. Kiki Says:

    A sobering reminder.

  5. snafu Says:

    Thanks for this post that makes us grateful we are on the giving side of the spectrum. Our family's problems seem like raindrops compared to those needing assistance from a food pantry. I wonder what DD and her friend got from this experience. When DSs were in elementary school DH and I were part of a group of Sunday volunteers that cared for kids temporarily placed in a group home. Their parent[s] were ill, in crisis or incarcerated short term. We found bringing our kids helped break the ice and get to know these kids better. 10 years later we learned how very much those experiences changed how DSs they saw their world.

  6. scottish girl Says:

    Thank you for posting. I watched a benefits program a while ago and it showed a couple who needed to go to the food pantry every week. They paid 2.50/wk and they could help themselves to ten items I think, every week. Because they went every week, the volunteers/staff knew them so they said to them it was the equivalent of going to the local supermarket. They also said they wouldn't be able to cope without it. (I think they got items from shops that were going to waste/damaged packets etc)

  7. LivingAlmostLarge Says:

    Thanks so much for donating. Ive done food pantries a long time with my mom and now with my kids. I always appreciated having enough to eat.

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