Archive for November, 2011

Lafayette Elementary School Food Drive

Lafayette Elementary School loves to host a holiday food drive every year in October. The process: the children bring in food each week for 3 weeks and on Friday mornings Marianne Brent and a few other parents go around to each classroom to pick up and count the food items to determine the winner of the week. Once the food is collected and counted it is placed in the 4 barrels in front of the main office. Next begins the fun. The 4th grade teacher Nancy Beliveau has her students pull food from the barrels and bring it into the MU room. They do this until all of the food is on the black line on the floor. Next the students take the food, one item at a time, and place it in the appropriate Food Bank boxing category. Once all of the food is boxed, the box lids are closed and the food is taken back to the Food Bank. For week 2 and week 3, a different 4th grade class joins Nancy Beliveau’s students for the boxing. The experienced students find a partner from the other class and work as a team to retrieve the food and place it in the correct boxes until all of the food is sorted/boxed.

The Food Bank’s goal? Bring the Food Bank to the students so they can experience volunteering plus this process has increased our food collections. At the end of the 3rd Friday, the students had collected and boxed 2,551 pounds of food. It was great to watch the teamwork, the smiles and great questions as the students volunteered. The students added love to every food item they touched. Nancy also took the next step in education by adding in lesson plans about food categories and what are the best foods to help others.

Thank you Marianne Brent and parent helpers, teacher Nancy Beliveau. Lafayette Elementary School faculty, students and parents for making the food drive such a success and for sharing volunteering and compassion with these wonderful children.

By the way, the prize for the class that brought in the most food? A field trip to the Food Bank. I think we are the ultimate winners: food and future Food Bank volunteers!

Girl Scout Tour Day

On Saturday 10/22/11, we had over 160 Girl Scouts (plus leaders) visit the Food Bank for a tour and help bag potatoes for the distribution the following week. The scouts learned about who we help and how we do it. The highlights are always the large scale to weigh the food on, the coolers, the freezer and some of the unusual food donations we receive.

Little did we know that these girl scouts of all ages would really embrace the task and bag thousands of potatoes. All of the agencies receiving the potatoes were very thankful because the potatoes were ready to go to clients. I am sure that night in their sleep, the scouts were counting to 10 over and over again. The scouts also brought in over 500 pounds of food and other scout troops will be hosting their own food drives for us in the next month.

The scouts were from Lafayette, San Ramon, Walnut Creek, Brentwood, Antioch, Concord, Pleasant Hill and Benicia. It was such a success, I want to have another Girl Scout Only Day in the spring. Next time I will plan better for these super volunteers! GIRL SCOUTS ARE GREAT!