Mineral Monday: Volunteering

I’ve decided that just because Mineral isn’t getting a Service Dog, doesn’t mean I can’t blog about our adventures with him or how he’s doing.

Saturday I took Animal and Mineral to volunteer at a Food Bank. (The Informant and My Masterpiece were at an all-day-and-night birthday party, otherwise I would have taken them too.)

But let me explain why —

One day last week, Animal was complaining about something — I think it was about not having enough 3DS games, or not getting to eat quesadillas at every meal or having to do too many chores. And I had a moment of momsanity and said something like, “Do you have any idea how lucky you are? Some kids don’t have FOOD!” Oops. Miss Manners and I have talked about how the least effective way to get your kid to appreciate what he or she has is to tell them to appreciate it.

To underscore the point, I showed them a video about hunger on YouTube. It was, unsurprisingly, quite depressing. Pictures of skinny malnourished children and the statistic that every six seconds, someone in the world dies of hunger-related illness. Fun times. (And although the video was a bit global, when we volunteered at the Food Bank, the volunteer coordinator told us that in next-door Johnston County, 40% of children are at risk of hunger.)

Animal and Mineral took from this that we should donate one of our whole chickens that we purchased after the sale at Whole Foods Market ($1.39/lb!) since we bought five.

Ummmmmmmmmm. Well, you can’t quite donate perishable foods, children. 

“Well, what can we do?” they wanted to know.


So, Saturday we went to the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina. It’s a large organization that’s also part of Feeding America.

Mineral and Animal by a forklift!

I chose this Food Bank because it has a four-star rating with Charity Navigator (Feeding America has three stars. Susan G Komen has negative seven. I kid. Ha.) Also, this Food Bank has a kids volunteer day, twice a month (on the second and fourth Saturdays) and it seemed like a low-key way to help out.

I think the last time I volunteered at a Food Bank was about 20 years ago, I’m embarrassed to admit. Probably for my Bat Mitzvah, my B’nai Mitzvah group had to volunteer for that entire year at various places.

I was really worried about Mineral — he gets very nervous when we do new things, and tends to want to bring his older-kid lovies (stuff he attaches to that helps him feel more comfortable. Right now it’s his camera bag, his ninja mouth-mask, and sometimes a book or a puzzle). For whatever reason — and I mean that literally, because he’s very difficult to predict — he was awesome.

How cute are they? Seriously.

Mineral took our job (bagging pasta) very seriously. He had no problem with wearing gloves and an apron and a hairnet. He was very helpful. He talked to the other kids who were there volunteering, and also to the adults. He even told a few jokes! He was very relaxed while we were there.

We’re definitely going back next month for the next Kids Day events!

%d bloggers like this: