Giving the Food Away
20.09.2012 - 20.09.2012 75 °F
What a day! We collected, sorted, and distributed lots of food.
Our day began at 7:00 am. The men took the panel van and went to the farm and bakery to collect food donations. They returned mid-day with the van stuffed full. The bread was freshly baked. The vegetables were just picked. The fruits were fresh and perfectly ripe. When the van was unloaded the basement of the church was full of food. It was all divided into individual baskets for families to pick up. What bounty to share!
The church has plastic crates for each family. Today we spread out 109 crates in the hall and classrooms. Each type of food was divided and packaged into 109 bags. Then workers each took one type of food and placed it in each of the 109 boxes. There were people moving around in tight spaces, filling boxes, counting loaves of bread and desserts, cleaning and packaging vegetables, and counting yogurt. The carrots were checked for bad places and the leeks were cleaned with wilted outer leaves removed. No family received any food item that we would not buy or eat ourselves. These foods were not stale or rotting leftovers from the suppliers. Everything was fresh and good and healthy.
We placed boxes on each table, added salad greens, bread, desserts, and yogurt to the table for each family to pick up. Families pay $12.00 for each food box. The money is used to pay the operating costs of the van. We estimated the cost of the food in the US would be $150.00 or more. Families bring their own bags in which to take the food home. What a joy it was to see them come in a few at a time and leave with more food than they could carry. We all were pleased to help them to their cars with bags of groceries.
All families spoke French, some spoke English. Each of us used the few French phrases we knew and then resorted to sign language when necessary. Always the families understood us and thanked us and church members for the food they received.
What a sight it was at the end of the day to see the rooms and hallways empty where they had once been filled with food boxes and to know that families would have food for the coming week.
After a long day, we were hosted for a evening meal by Richard and Louise. Richard grilled spare ribs with a special Asian sauce. They were delicious. It was a treat to sit around the table and talk with our Chateauguay friends during and after a lovely meal. Christian fellowship is always a joy.