As the postal servicemen and women trickled into the James Moody U.S. Post Office, so did the brown paper bags full of donated non-perishable food donations. The Food Bank of the Golden Crescent set up shop inside the mail room, thankfully. I was expecting it to be outside in the middle of the parking lot where people could drop off donations for the food bank. This was my first time participating in the event so I wasn't completely sure what to expect.
When I arrived at about 2 p.m., the volunteers and several employees of the food bank were there sorting the bags as they were pushed in on carts the postal workers use to bring outgoing and incoming mail to their trucks and after delivery. There were big cardboard boxes for designated for all the different kind of donations: meat, vegetables, fruit, tomatoes, dry goods, soup, and glass and miscellaneous products. Once they were full, the sides of the boxes would bow out and looked like they might bust. With the help of a pallet mover, which also had a built-in scale, the boxes were taken to the truck and replaced with empty ones.
The first box I saw towed away weighed about 675 pounds, which I think was about half of what the food bank collected last year. I recall overhearing Dennis Brown, the director of the Golden Crescent Food Bank say that last year's total was something over 1,000 pounds. By about 4 p.m. we had demolished last year's count and the bags were still coming in by the carts.
All the bags were full of things like kernel corn, spaghetti sauce, bottles of barbecue sauce, oatmeal and countless other foods. We even had a few people pack up some old clothes for donating and another had some curtains. I think the bags the postal workers distributed before the day of the food drive helped a lot, too. We had mounds of bags to be recycled by the end and it seemed like we were going to run out of space for them, too.
I didn't hear the last count on how much the food drive had collected, but I know it was more than enough to keep us busy at the warehouse cleaning and sorting the donations. Not to mention all the food that will go out to feed Victorians and supply soup kitchens and food pantries. I had to leave early, but the carts were still coming. It was about a quarter to six when I left and I heard someone say the last of the trucks had yet to arrive. We even had more than we could sort through at the post office, so we had to just pile the donation bags into their own boxes to be sorted later.
It was great to be a part of it and I am glad there was such a wonderful response by the community. Thank you to all of Victoria for the generous donations.
If you're interested in volunteering at the Food Bank of the Golden Crescent as an individual or as a group, contact Mary Lou Trevino at email@example.com or call the food bank at 361-578-0591. We are going to the need the extra help for the next few weeks, that's for sure.
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