November Mission – Fighting Hunger

second-harvest-food-bank

SECOND HARVEST FOOD BANK

The face of hunger is all around us, and it is hard to see, especially in affluent areas like Silicon Valley where we live. Millions of Americans don’t know where their next meal is coming from and the fight to end hunger is a long, ongoing, uphill battle.

These are just a few of the many reasons we chose November’s Mission to be focused on “Fighting Hunger” however we can and we chose to work with and support the Second Harvest Food Bank. Take a look at what we will be doing this month and join along however you can. Last year we collected 326 pounds of food and we would love to beat that this year!

ABOUT

Based in Silicon Valley, the Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties is one of the largest food banks in the nation. Currently providing food to more than one-quarter of a million people every month, Second Harvest is a trusted community-based organization that was founded in 1974.

Despite the immense wealth in Silicon Valley, and partly due to the high cost of living, hunger and malnutrition are pervasive. The Food Bank distributes nutritious food, including more fresh produce than any other food bank in the country, through a network of over 320 nonprofit partners at more than 850 sites. Partner agencies include shelters, pantries, soup kitchens, children’s programs, senior meal sites, and residential programs.

In fiscal year 2017 (July 2016 – June 2017), Second Harvest distributed more than one million pounds of nutritious food each week to low-income people in need in every zip code of our service area from South San Francisco to Gilroy, and from the ocean to the bay.

MONTHLY MISSION OUTLINE

  • Collect canned goods. // Most needed items: Meals in a can (soup, stew, chili), Tuna or canned chicken, Peanut butter, Canned foods with pop-top lids, Canned fruit in its own juice or water, Low-sodium canned vegetables, Olive or canola oil, Spices, Low-sugar whole grain cereals, Healthy snacks (granola bars, nuts, dried fruit). Please avoid donating items packaged in glass. If you find glass items in your barrel, please package them in a box outside of your food collection barrel to prevent breakage.
  • Drop off all your collected canned goods. // You can drop off your donation items at The Finding Kindness Project drop-off location: 14685 Oka Road, Los Gatos, CA 95032 OR email us for pick-up. We are happy to come get your donation items for you and drop them off as well. Email us at thefindingkindnessproject@gmail.com.

BUILDING A KINDNESS COOPERATIVE

Examples of how Rachel & Sue will be putting this Monthly Mission into action:

  • If you are local, join us for the group shopping trip at Grocery Outlet afterschool on Wednesday,  November 29th at 1:45. This is a great way for the kids to get hands-on picking out foods, reading labels and handling money. (see here for details).
  • Taking a wagon around our neighborhoods with our kids after school collecting from neighbors.
  • Reaching out to our immediate social circles; i.e. Girl Scout Troop, Gymnastics Gym, School Board, Hockey Team and Book Club
  • Take a peek at our socials throughout the month to see what else we are doing to participate in raising a Kind generation. Use our hashtag, #kindcooperative, to follow along AND tag us so we can see how you are making the world a little more kind.

FISCAL INFORMATION

If you would like to make a tax-deductible donation instead you can do so HERE. Want to know where your money is going? Here is some fiscal information about the Second Harvest Food Bank for your review:

Throughout the fiscal year, volunteers contributed over 310,000 hours of service, which saved them $6.6 million in equivalent personnel costs.

Below are some figures from their 2014-2015 annual report.

  • 96 % of operating expenses go to food distributions and programs
  • 2% to fundraising
  • 2% go to management
  • 60% of Operating Revenue comes straight from individuals like you and me.

If you would like to check out their 2015-2016 annual report in its entirety check out it HERE.

Thank you and see you next month for our next Monthly Mission:

The New and Gently Used Toy Drive!

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Making Dreams Real with the Princess Project

 

November Mission: Making Dreams Come True with the Princess Project

The Princess Project believes in making dreams real every day, and we are incredibly proud to help volunteer with our Silicon Valley chapter.

Our community is always asking how they can help. If you are unable to get hands on with their teens, we encourage you to support this cause by sending a teen to prom with just $25. Every little bit helps and we believe that we can make a difference together.

Giving Tuesday is a national philanthropic effort that reminds us to stay grateful and give back when Black Friday, Shop Small Saturday, and Cyber Monday are upon us. We would love your support, please give early and often. Facebook will waive fees and match donations that actually occur on Giving Tuesday (11/28) so mark your calendars. Thanks!

More about what they do…

The Princess Project is a 100% volunteer-run effort that provides free
prom dresses and accessories to Silicon Valley teens who could not otherwise afford them.

Every year they seek and receives hundreds of beautiful dresses from individual donors, corporations and fundraisers.

After they receive all of the dresses and accessories, the wonderful volunteers organize them for the dress giveaway event.

During the dress giveaway, hundreds of teens from all over the Bay Area (sometimes even farther) come and find their perfect dress to make their prom dreams real!

They are a small but mighty group. They have full time jobs, are parents, and run a million miles a minute to keep up with Silicon Valley’s fast paced environment.

We’ve seen their smiling faces. Read their words of hope and thanks, praising the positive and uplifting environment we build for them where they feel safe and beautiful.

Please join us by supporting their efforts, making even more dreams come true.

DONATE HERE: http://bit.ly/2lLR7OW

Happy Random Acts of Kindness Day!

The wind is nuts and the rain is relentless today.

People are annoyed, grouchy and exhausted everywhere I turn.

Luckily, the little glimmer hope is today is National Random Acts of Kindness Day!

Rachel and I had some silly, cheerful plans today that were thwarted by the weather, but not to worry we will be celebrating and spreading light in little ways everywhere we go.

Need some ideas on how you too can participate in this much-needed fun day? We got you! Take a look below and don’t forget to share the love… #kindcooperative

Super Guadalupe River 5K Recap

Last weekend Rachel’s family and I had the opportunity to participate in the Super Guadalupe River Run 5K.

This is such a fun and easy way to get the family outdoors, moving together and support the Guadalupe River Park Conservancy at the same timeAll the money for participation goes to supporting the parks and the conservancy. My little family had been taken down by the flu the previous week so not all of us were able to make it, but luckily, we were still able to make a donation by registering on their behalf.

There were three options for races; 1K – for the kids, 5K – for the walkers or new to running folks, and a 10K – for the seasoned runners. We, as a group, opted for the 5K so the kids could run with Rachel’s husband, Francisco, and this lady could try to keep up with speed-walker Rachel. LOL…

The race was fun and only the 2nd 5K I have ever participated in, and the first for my son, Brayden, and I believe the first for Rachel and her family. The kids were so excited to get their racing bibs and then at the end, their t-shirts and their very own fancy race medals! I know with my son, who is super competitive, this lit a spark for him and he has been asking to do another 5K ever since!

After we completed the race we were able to enjoy the Rotary Play Garden that was located right next door to the race day activities. I have been wanting to check out this new park for a while now and glad we did because it was not only a big hit with the kids, but it was so beautiful to look at and the story behind it really touched my heart.

The Rotary Play Garden is one of the few public parks in Santa Clara County where children with special needs can play on the playground equipment alongside their families and friends without disabilities. The $6 million Play Garden enables children with special needs to play alongside their siblings and friends and is maintained by Guadalupe River Park Conservancy staff and volunteers, in-kind donations, and fee-for-service contracts.

We were able to talk to the kids about how the money we spent to purchase our registration for the race was not only supporting the land we saw while on the race, but parks like the Rotary Play Garden that enriches the lives of kids like them and those with disabilities that traditional parks aren’t properly equipped for.

All in all, I would say that the morning was a HUGE success and hopefully next year we can do it all again!

Below you will find some pictures from the race and the Rotary Play Garden. Enjoy! #kindcooperative