Volunteering at Food for Lane County

MiLady Carol's bread, served with green tea, baked on Pampered Chef stoneware bar panOnce a month, a group of local Pampered Chef consultants volunteer at Food for Lane County. Last night was my first time there and I had a blast!

Food for Lane County has an amazing facility with a huge kitchen area equipped for dozens of people to pitch in help feed our community. It’s all grunt work – repackaging bulk donations into smaller packages, cleaning, etc. – with the most amazing people! Dan, the man who works there, has to be one of the most chipper fellows I’ve ever met. A father of two teenagers, he manages 20-30 volunteers a night with ease and laughter. Add to that an opportunity to work closely around the table with other women in our Pampered Chef family and I’m totally stoked to work again next month.

I’ve also done some volunteer work with St. Vincent de Paul’s and seen their operation. Now I know the source behind their pantries. We spent the evening bagging dried mushrooms, parceling out potato soup, prepping bags, and setting up food samples. It was a wonderfully rich experience and I’m so glad I’m involved in a company that really supports our local needs.

Oregon has one of the highest unemployment rates and is one of the hungriest states in America. We are in big trouble. The statistics are completely depressing. People are out of work, have no health care, are delaying dental and medical care in favor of more immediate needs like food, and are still not making ends meet. Requests for Emergency Food Boxes are on the rise and we’re having trouble meeting people’s needs. I’m even more jazzed than ever about my cooking shows where I talk about how we can each stretch our food budget by preparing healthy meals at home. Every tip and every trick helps, so I’m thrilled to be able to share my experience.

I’ve also learned that Food for Lane County has some gardens in which rely upon volunteers to grow local produce. One of them is right near a friend’s house. We were just talking yesterday about how we’d like to find a place where she and her six year old can volunteer together. How perfect is that?

Breathe deeply,
Laugh with abandon,
Love wholly,
Eat well.

MiLady Carol
Dazzling jewelry that reflects sparkling personalities!

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