Stamp Out Hunger 2012

Saturday was Stamp Out Hunger 2012! I have been posting on Facebook and tweeting about it. (Yes, I tweet. I’m not very good at it, though. I get confused about whether I should use a # or a @ and I am unsure of proper Twitter etiquette. But you can follow me @cincodemommy if you want!)

We arrived at a post office in north Raleigh, got our Stamp Out Hunger tshirts and waited for the donated food to arrive:

Mineral and Animal wait for the mail trucks in their Stamp Out Hunger tshirts.

Trucks arrived, bearing non-perishable food in brown paper bags. If the bags were torn, or the cans weren’t in bags, the letter carriers put them in those plastic USPS boxes

Food, ready to get put in bags and then placed in boxes.

We received a lot of canned goods — mostly soup and beans and meat — and chips, as well as condiments and veggies. Lots of boxes of dessert mix.

However, I was really cheered to see baby food, as hunger affects babies too!

Jars of baby food.

I found a note in one paper bag

No, thank YOU for donating!

We collected so much food at our post office, the site coordinator had to go back for more pallets and boxes!

Bringing more pallets and boxes.

Overall we filled 16 huge boxes — just at one post office! Stamp Out Hunger is a national food drive, so I can not even imagine how much food was collected overall!

Putting bags into a box. The boxes were huge!

I am so proud to have been a part of Stamp Out Hunger 2012!

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Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive

Remember when I first moved here, and I wrote about my mailman, Chuck, who did NOT like it when my address was written incorrectly on letters? (Don’t remember that? Okay I just looked back and apparently I never posted about it. Here’s the story: my neighborhood postman is named Chuck, and when I first moved here, Jugs wrote me letters with the wrong house number — off by one digit. After hand-delivering my letters for a week, Chuck left me a VERY detailed note, which included the phrase PLEASE USE THE RIGHT ADDRESS! in shouty capitals — and he even double-underlined it.) Anyway, he’s still a bit of a wild card, and often my People Magazine arrives late, but regardless — the National Association of Letter Carriers is sponsoring a “Stamp Out Hunger” Food Drive!

(Credit: Flickr/vastateparkstaff)

This is the 20th annual national “Stamp Out Hunger” — the largest one-day food drive in the nation! Last year, over 70 million pounds of food were donated across the United States.

It’s easy to participate! Simply place your non-perishable food items by your mailbox on Saturday, May 12th or deliver them to your local post office.

(Credit: Flickr/Pocius)

You can take part in this food drive from anywhere in the nation. If you live here in Wake County, the Food Bank of Central an Eastern North Carolina has volunteer opportunities at various post offices. You will receive a “Stamp Out Hunger” Food Drive tshirt, and snacks will be provided. Children are welcome, as long as they are accompanied by an adult.

For more information about the 2012 “Stamp Out Hunger” Food Drive, visit the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina’s information page. And remember, place your non-perishable food items by your mailbox on May 12.

Credit: Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina

Together with mail carriers like Chuck, we can “Stamp Out Hunger!”

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.

We can VOLUNTEER.

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!

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