Monday, September 30, 2013

247th Week Update - Miles Neighborhood One Can A Week Project

Hi Folks,
Impressive Numbers … Impressive Neighbors

It’s fun to study the numbers in the quarterly report and how they fluctuate from week to week. Soon you realize there is no way to predict what the next week’s donations will be.  

However, there is some predictability in the small chart just below the headline. That shows the totals for the first three quarters in the past three years. The bold number is the sum of the weekly donations for the Miles Neighborhood and DKA Advocates, Dot Kret’s firm on the corner of Vine and Broadway.

The figure on the bottom is the total food donated through the Miles Neighborhood One Can A Week program and includes hefty, intermittent donations from Maen Mdanat and his Axis Food Mart.

The bold number is the impressive number though, because it shows only a slight variation from year to year. And that variation recently was due in large part to Barbara Farragut’s bakery participant closing and the banana store changing managers. (She had to sell (charm) the new guy to participate, which he did, of course.)

The impressive neighbors part involves consistency. For nearly five years 50% of the neighborhood has participated in the One Can A Week program without skipping a beat. When Barbara, Lenny, Kym or I show up the can is there.

Obviously I’m really impressed but what about sociologists? What would they think about a community service program where people do care and donate every week without fail to feed thousands upon thousands of hungry folks? It really doesn’t matter what they think because we will go on and on doing it anyway no matter who is watching. And that’s impressive, too.

First One Can A Week Display
in a Supermarket

Soon after setting up the display table in Sprouts on Saturday I went looking for the “satellite” tables as Richard the store manager calls them. They are located near the store entrances. During the week, Anthony, the grocery manager was going to stack canned goods around the little table to encourage customers to pick up something to donate to the food bank as soon as they rolled their carts into the store.

The table on the east door was no where in sight. “Darn,” I thought, “what happened? Did management change its mind?” I spun around looking in all directions and then I walked ten more feet into the store. “There it is. Holy cow, look at the size of that thing,” I said aloud.

I was looking for the small TV table but it was smothered by stacks and stacks of cans. What I finally saw was the One Can A Week sign on top. It took another second or two for me to realize that Anthony got really creative with his display by raising the tiny table off of the floor and making it part of the structure. And Barbie’s signage made the display even more striking.

For about a minute I just stood there quietly looking at it. Back in 2009 Barbara Farragut was the one who thought we should approaching supermarkets. April 11th we set up our first display table at Safeway. Then the Rincon Market a year or so later. But One Can A Week never became part of a supermarket’s effort to feed the hungry. They just gave me space to collect food one day a week.

Now, there before me was the final payoff for nearly five years of persistence. While slowly studying the display I also thought about Rosemary Chacon. She helped me with One Can A Week in the Sunflower Market days and just recently encouraged me to talk to Richard again now that Sprouts had settled in.

Rosemary was working Register Three. After taking photos I walked over to her and thanked her again for making all this possible.

Life is nothing but a confluence of events and if you do not pay attention to the little bits of information that are meant to help you choose the right path, success will elude you. This is why I listen to everyone—especially when it comes to One Can  A Week—because I know if I miss something, success will not be part of my story and hungry parents and their kids will not be fed.

Epilog – When I left at 1 pm, the display did not look as pretty because lots of cans were missing.  Sprouts and its customers donated 88 lbs. of food this week.

11th Truck Load
There were only five donors this week but they sure gave a lot … 652 lbs. to be exact. Sprouts and the Axis Food Mart weighed in at 88 lbs. each; Shiva Vista, 50 lbs.; Ward 6, 204 lbs. and the Miles Neighborhood, 222 lbs.

As you can imagine, I needed help pushing it up the ramp at the food bank.

Good NewsAl Shoemaker
a long, long time Miles neighbor, went into the hospital for serious back surgery a week ago and just got out of the ICU. He is heading to physical therapy rehab for a few weeks.

If you know Al, send a get well card to his home and I will make sure it is delivered to him personally.


We collected a total of 310 lbs. of food. The money we donated amounted to $31.00, a $25.00 check and $6.00 in cash.

See you Sunday,


No comments:

Post a Comment