Originally posted in the Vacaville Reporter: I am constantly in awe of the generosity that the community shows the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano. Along with donating food and volunteering their time, many also provide financial support because they know that we keep our administrative and fund development costs at 4 percent and understand that we are doing an effective job at safely feeding their neighbors in need.
Like many nonprofit organizations, we feel it’s most effective to educate people about the work we do when we have opportunities to interact with them in person. With that in mind, last year we brought our supporters together for the first annual Nourish Gala at Round Hill Country Club.
As we honored our 40th anniversary at the Gala in 2015, we asked our supporters to help us buy a refrigerated truck. We had a phenomenal response and we were able to obtain the vehicle we needed to get food to those we serve.
We recently held our second annual Nourish Gala at the same location in Alamo. This time we asked those in attendance to help us purchase a new refrigeration unit for one of our existing trucks. New clean air regulations in California mean that our existing vehicle will not be compliant in 2017, so we need to upgrade the unit. When our auctioneer was done with the fundraising for this one request, we had not only met our goal, our wonderful supporters had far exceeded it. It’s clear that people understand that our ongoing work is important, whether we are raising funds for equipment, fuel or food.
While we were doing great things raising money for the Food Bank, the Nourish Gala was also an incredibly fun event. Roberta Gonzalez from KPIX CBS San Francisco agreed to be our guest host. We appreciate the high energy and compassion she brings to our Galas and we were thrilled to have her attend for the second consecutive year.
Our auctioneer led an enthusiastic and kindhearted crowd through a fun evening. When all was said and done, we had exceeded our overall fundraising goal for the event. In addition to the refrigeration unit, we raised funds equal to 197,000 meals!
On behalf of the people we serve, we extend our sincere thanks to our sponsors, auction donors and attendees for making the evening such a success.
To see photos from the event, visit our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/foodbankccs.
If black tie optional events aren’t for you, but you still want to learn more about what the Food Bank does, we encourage you to take to come take a tour of one of our warehouses. Seeing our daily operations will give you an idea of the magnitude of the work we do serving our food-insecure neighbors.
Visit www.foodbankccs.org/tours to schedule a visit.
The author is executive director of the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano, based in Concord. Email: [email protected]