WISE members enjoyed participating in a county wide call to action and community outreach effort to stock local food pantries in Anne Arundel County during summer, which is traditionally lower in donations affecting those who suffer from food insecurity in our community. Robin Peters, WISE Steering Committee Member, represented WISE during the group donation from all the huddles representing the Anne Arundel Huddle Network.
by Chelsea Harrison
Thanks to everyone who organized, donated, and delivered, the Anne Arundel Huddle Network food drive was a huge success. Together we made a difference! A very special thank you to Vikka from the South County Huddle for leading this incredibly successful effort. Here are some of the regional results:
On August 3rd, five members from our different Huddles delivered over 240 pounds of food to the Anne Arundel County Food Bank in Crownsville. Huddle members were given a tour of the Food Bank and found the experience rewarding. Vikka explained that the Food Bank values non-perishable foods of all kinds — large cans go to locations that prepare meals and feed people on-site, small cans go to community pantries where the food is made available to those in need, and individual snack-packs are used in school children’s backpacks. In addition, they need toiletries, paper products and all those necessities that families need but can’t afford. The Food Bank often needs volunteers to help sort and pack food items for the many charitable institutions and case workers to use it. Selecting one day a month, or one day a quarter to volunteer at the Food Bank would be a useful thing for Huddle members to consider. Also, Jayme of The Rising Huddle added that since the AA Co Food Bank supplies items for many of the pantries and food banks in the county, it would be a good idea to work with a food bank in our own community, if possible, so we get to know the locals and can have the added opportunity for outreach.
- Laurel Resist members Gabriella and Eileen dropped off two carloads of food donations along with kitchen and household goods to Laurel Advocacy and Referral Services (LARS). Amy coordinated the remarkable effort.
- AMP Huddle coordinated with the AA County Democrats on their canned food drive. They collected 3 moving boxes of canned food and a $200 check to the Light House Shelter.
- WISE members made donations to Severna Park Assistance Network (SPAN).
- Ann and Vikka of South County Huddledelivered a trunk-load of food (about 100 lbs.) to the South County Assistance Network (SCAN) in Lothian, along with $50 in donations from the Safeway and Weis grocery stores in Edgewater secured by Erin of Warrior Women Huddle. The SCAN team was extremely grateful; they had little food on their shelves and needed our donations, and those of the South County Democratic Club, with whom we coordinated. The gift certificates will be given to people with special needs whom SCAN cannot accommodate from their regular food supplies for example, prescriptions, gluten-free or diabetic foods. Cash, which can be used for any kind of food for which there is a shortage, and gift cards for people with special needs, are appreciated, as well as food.
And they persisted…Please be aware, Vikka will continue to monitor two food collection locations, so you still have a chance to participate. Thanks to Edgewater Fitness on Mayo Road, who is collecting until 16 Aug, and also cheers to Annapolis Athletic Club on Bay Ridge Road who is extending collection through the end of August. Also, the South County Huddlehas started an ongoing effort to assist SCAN.