Week 3 of SIP Summer Camp :)
Goal: To help my kids to be involved in the community and be aware of the needs of our community.
How we did it: There were 6 adults and 15 kids between us who came to the Road Runner Food Bank. I called the food bank and asked what age you have to be to volunteer. I was shocked to hear them say you had to be 6 years old if accompanied by an adult and 16 to come alone. For some reason I was thinking you had to be 12 to volunteer at the food bank. I was happy to hear the news! I asked them if they did tours and they said they did and would be happy to give us one. I told them many of the kids were under 6 and that some in our group would stay and volunteer after the tour, which was about 20minutes perfect for little people attention spans. We had two moms one teen and 6 kids stay and volunteer for just over an hour. The rest of us went to the park for an hour while the others volunteered. Which worked out great since both moms had kids under 6.
This would be a fun monthly group or as part of a play group. People could switch of watching kids and volunteering. Kids still play and moms still get to socialize. Though this would only work during summers and for homeschoolers.
I heard varying things from everyone when it was over. I was at the park watching kids. I will be going back soon though with my daughter and others I hope. I heard from my SIL that my little bug told her cousin while they were volunteering "this is boring let's get out of here and go to the park." Am I mortified, no, because she needs to learn how to work and choose to make a good time of it. That's what I want to teach her too. No I am not going to go on about how I failed. If she says stuff like this when she is much older then yes I will fill like I let her down by not teaching her how to work. On the other hand the other mother who stayed and volunteered with her son said her son was super enthusiastic and worked hard and even asked to come back to the food bank the next day. He just loved it. The other kids seemed to enjoy it too. It's hard to know what experience in your child's life will have the greatest impact on them. That's why I want to provide lots of opportunities for them to do good and to start them on the path of coming up with their own ideas and ways to give back.
The kids found a rock pile out front before we went into the food bank. They were pretty rambunctious in the foyer. The staff at the food bank was phenomenal though. We all brought food, which they weigh and tell you how many pounds you brought. We sat in a circle in the foyer while our guides talked to us before the tour. Thank You to our tour guides Anna-maria and Jason for your kindness and patience.
The building they are in is about 122,000sq feet. The one they moved from a few years ago was about 20,000sq feet, so just a little difference in size. I took pics with my little Sony point and shoot I didn't want to lug my other camera around since I wasn't' sure how things would play out. Wrangling kids, listening to the guide and taking pics proved to be enough. The one feature I love with my point and shoot is that it takes panoramic pictures. Image quality not so hot.
We ended in another circle in the foyer. The kids were well behaved on the tour and I hope they learned a lot.
As I was checking out the Road Runner Food Banks website I read about the history of the food bank and it talks about how the idea of a food bank was completely new in the US in 1980. It got me thinking, the Bishop's Store House which is part of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints aka Mormons. It is just down the street from the road runner food bank and is one of many all over the world. The church's welfare program, which is open to helping members of the church and those who are NOT members of the church has been in operation "officially" for 75 years. It is operated by donations from members of the church and "friends of the LDS church." I fast for 24 hours once a month and donate the money I would have spent to buy food as a fast offering...“When we fast, … we feel hunger. And for a short time, we literally put ourselves in the position of the hungry and needy. As we do so, we have greater understanding of the deprivations they might feel. When we give to the bishop an offering to relieve the suffering of others, we not only do something sublime for others, but we do something wonderful for ourselves as well.”