Navigate / search

A Few Spare Minutes to Make a Big Impact

“The most difficult thing is the decision to act. The rest is merely tenacity. You can do anything you decide to do.”

-       Amelia Earhart

I think most of us aspire to make a difference – either in our careers, in the lives of our loved ones, or in our community.

But life, with all its complications and commitments, often seems to stand in the way.

Social Graphic 2 - Customizable Version

Though we may have the best of intentions, we somehow never seem to find the time or energy to do all that we hope to do.

Like many of us, I often tell myself that I’ll be able to do more giving back later in my life. . .when my son is older. When my work is less busy. When I have fewer social commitments.

The trouble with “later” is that inevitably, something or someone new always appears. That hope for “later” becomes a mirage we continually chase.

What if I could do something NOW? Is there something I can do in my small snippets of free time that would still make a difference?

Right now, the St. Louis Area Foodbank needs your online vote to help us win a $60,000 grant. If we win, we will be able to provide more than 200,000 additional meals to families in need!

You can vote once a day at http://stlfoodbank.org/clickforacause. Just put MO in the search bar and vote for the St. Louis Area Foodbank. Then share with your friends and family and encourage them to vote too!

Then, as we continue to celebrate Hunger Action Month, I’m happy to say that there are a myriad of additional things I – and those like me – can do.

Here’s a list of small actions that require just a few moments to achieve, but still make a big impact. You can make a difference in the lives of the 1 in 8 people in our community who struggle with hunger.

 By Bethany Prange

St. Louis Area Foodbank Social Media Specialist

Feed Ferguson Update

It has been amazing to see the work being done in the Ferguson community to make sure that kids and families that are in need of food assistance are getting the help they need.

We were thrilled to see that the Ferguson-Florissant school district made the decision to provide lunch for students this week. Learn more on KSDK

Feed_Ferguson_Update___St__Louis_Area_Foodbank


Community Resource Drop-In Center

At the Foodbank, we have been concentrating our efforts on providing food assistance to the United Way of Greater St. Louis’ Community Resource Drop-In Center at the Dellwood Recreation Center (10266 W. Florissant Avenue, St. Louis, MO 63136). To date, we have delivered more than 14,000 pounds of food to be distributed to kids and families affected by the unrest in Ferguson.

On Saturday, August 23 and into the early part of the next week, we are using our Foodbank trucks to pick up donations of food, personal care items, school supplies and cleaning supplies from area businesses that will be delivered directly to the Community Resource Drop-In Center.


Feed the Students of Ferguson

On Monday, August 25 we are scheduled to receive the first shipment of cereal that will be distributed among our partner agencies that serve Ferguson and the surrounding communities.

More food should be arriving later in the week. Using the funds raised by the Feed the Students of Ferguson Fundly campaign, we will be providing more food to help ensure that students in the Ferguson/Florissant school district and their families will not have to choose between paying for food and other basic necessities as the town rebuilds and recovers.

Stay Involved

The Fundly campaign has ended, but if you would like to contribute to the Ferguson Fund, please visit the United Way of Greater St. Louis’ page:
http://www.stl.unitedway.org/helpingferguson/

If you would like to support the St. Louis Area Foodbank’s mission of feeding hungry people throughout the bi-state region, please visit our donation page:
http://stlfoodbank.org/donate/

If you would like the donation to go specifically to our efforts in Ferguson and the surrounding areas of North St. Louis County, please put “Ferguson” in the comments section.

 

Read our first update on helping Ferguson

Helping Ferguson

The St. Louis Area Foodbank has served the St. Louis community for nearly 40 years and will continue to do so as long as there is a need for food assistance.



Immediate Response to Ferguson

On Saturday, the St. Louis Area Foodbank partnered with the United Way of the Greater St. Louis to deliver 5,000 pounds of food to the Dellwood Community Center to help feed people in need in the Ferguson community.

This food was product the Foodbank had previously collected in food drives and is not associated with the “Feed the Students of Ferguson” campaign.




“Feed the Students of Ferguson” Fundly Campaign

At this time, the St. Louis Area Foodbank is the planned recipient of the money raised by the “Feed the Students of Ferguson” campaign.

The campaign, created by North Carolina school teacher Julianna Mendelsohn, has raised more than $80,000 so far. The campaign will end Thursday.

The outpouring of support from across the country has been overwhelming. The funds donated through the “Feed the Students of Ferguson” campaign have been earmarked for the Ferguson community, where children in need will continue to struggle with hunger long after the news cameras leave.

Have you received the funds from the Feed the Students of Ferguson campaign?

We had not yet received the funds as of noon today, August 20, 2014. After a discussion with the management of Fundly, we agreed that the funds raised would be transferred to the St. Louis Area Foodbank starting Thursday, August 21, 2014.

What will you do with the money?

Our goal is to provide a sustainable, long-term hunger relief program for the children of the Ferguson community. We have five partner food pantries in and around Ferguson who have been providing food to families in the community during this difficult time. These pantries serve the Ferguson community year-round, a hunger relief mission that the Foodbank will continue to support in any way we can.

As we look to the future, the Foodbank will implement a specific long-term plan for feeding children in need in Ferguson and provide a full financial accounting on the use of the campaign funds donated.

How long does the campaign run?

At this time, we plan to stop taking donations via the Fundly campaign, Feed the Students of Ferguson, on Thursday, August 21, 2014.




Future Recovery Efforts

The recovery effort in Ferguson will take time and the combined efforts of organizations and individuals in the St. Louis region. Our goal is to provide a steady supply of food to those in need in the Ferguson community for months to come.



How to Help

Anyone interested in supporting the St. Louis Area Foodbank’s efforts to feed hungry people can make a donation through the “Feed the Students of Ferguson” campaign https://fundly.com/feed-the-students-of-ferguson or make a donation at www.stlfoodbank.org and put “Ferguson” in the comments section.

For those looking for other ways to help the people of Ferguson please contact the United Way of Greater St. Louis.

Jeans BeCause – The Daniel & Henry Co. Gives Back

Every month, The Daniel & Henry Co. makes a donation to one of our non-profit clients. In July, we chose the St. Louis Area Foodbank!

IMG_1228

To encourage our employees and brokers to take part, we started the Jeans BeCause – Daniel and Henry Cares program.

When an employee makes a donation to the charity, they earn the chance to wear jeans to work once a month.

Don Hiemenz and Wes Mellow, the executives who nominated the Foodbank, matched the employee contributions dollar-for-dollar.
Read more

Struggling Families Pay It Forward

Sandra is battling breast cancer. But she is also battling hunger.

Last week, she skipped a chemotherapy treatment just so she could go to the Chester Area Christian Food Pantry to pick up the food she and her husband so desperately need.

And yet, Sandra doesn’t expect to take without giving back.

IMG_2096

Sandra and her husband have a lush garden, so every time she comes to pick up food from the pantry, she brings in bags full of tomatoes and other vegetables.

She is just one of the many people in this small southern Illinois community who share what little they have with others in need.

Food pantry staff tell countless stories of families in need who bring in homegrown fruits and vegetables or handmade items, hoping to share their own bounties with other families in need.

Yesterday, at a food fair in Chester, Ill., Foodbank staff watched nearly 180 of these families in need wait patiently in line for hours for their share of food.

IMG_2036

Some families lined up as early at 5 a.m., knowing the Foodbank truck wouldn’t arrive with food until after 10 a.m. They waited, in their cars, without complaint for nearly six hours.

This is a testament to how much these families truly need the food.

By 1 p.m., the nearly 20,000 pounds of food we delivered to Chester was gone, divided up amongst the families.

Every family I spoke with expressed gratitude for the food, and said without it, they would not have enough to eat.

They were also quick to tell me that when they get food from the pantry, if there is any extra or anything they can’t use, they share it with their neighbors in need.

Perhaps it is the common ground of hard times that motivates families in need to help one another. Or perhaps, they help each other when they can, simply because they want to pay it forward.

See some moving pictures from the Chester food fair here.

By Bethany Prange

Social Media Specialist