I am all about shopping local. I always look for a local version rather than shopping online. That doesn’t mean that the UPS truck hasn’t made regular stops at my house. It does mean that when my children ask me what I want, I always opt for an experience or an item from a downtown Adirondack shop.
We have found that gifts that add meaning can be as simple as donating food to a local food pantry.
According the Bethany Moxey, Communications Manager for the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York the busiest time for the food pantries is between Thanksgiving and Christmas, but she reminds us that people need to eat all year long.
“No one wants someone to go hungry and the push toward food pantries can slow down after the holidays,” says Moxey. “We have a variety of holiday alternative gift programs. These programs allow people to give a donation to a special agency such as a specific soup kitchen or food pantry, then print their own card with the gift amount.”
Some of the ongoing programs are The Farm, Holiday Hunger Appeal, Yom Kippur Hunger Appeal, Turkey Trot, Adopt a Program, and The Backpack Program.
“Right now we are making a push for personal hygiene products. These are items that people can’t purchase with food stamps,” Moxey explains. “People host food drives and target a specific theme. Every donation is important. It is shocking for people to learn that a cash donation goes farther in a food pantry. A cash donation allows us [the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York] to purchase the food through one of our thousand partnerships, distributing four meals for every dollar we spend.”
I know my family is not a bit concerned about going hungry. It is sometimes difficult to comprehend that schoolmates and neighbors may be struggling to put food on the table. A cash donation or a few nonperishable goods, is a gift that can help us all remember that no one should ever go hungry. I hope you have a safe and lovely holiday.
Food pantry donation box photo used with the permission of Diane Chase, AdirondackFamilyTime.com