A year or two ago, my kids and I were the recipients of a canned food drive from someone in our neighborhood. As a newly single mother coping with a tiny baby and two small boys, it was understandable that others might think that we had been left high and dry in other areas as well. Since we were fortunate enough to not be in that boat, I couldn't keep food that was meant for someone in actual need.
I had the boys help me sort the cans as I told them how we had received it because of kind hearts and giving hands. We talked about the way we feel when we give and what kinds of things we can do for others. We chose some favorite things from our own pantry to add to the lot and delivered everything to another local food drive. I hoped it warmed someone’s soul to receive it as much as it did mine.
We may not have needed canned goods, but the experience fed something else in me and awakened a desire to make sure I am also aware of others. I view food drives differently now. Store front food collection displays that I used to walk right by now catch my eye every time. It is such a simple thing to buy a few extra cans of something and donate it on your way out. When local church groups come to the door asking for donations, I remember now to reach for something that would be universally enjoyed as opposed to the zesty style re-fried beans that have been gathering dust for 6 months and need to be rotated.
Libby's is encouraging shoppers to stop by their local Fresh Market between now and Saturday, October 22 and donate their non-perishable items to help Habitat for Humanity families make mealtime a reality. Whether you go shopping in your own food storage or at the store, take the opportunity to get your kids involved. In a season of excess, they are never too young to tangibly learn the joy of giving. There will always be people in need and starting a habit of giving among your family is part of the solution.
Libby's (whose canned pumpkin is a key player in my amazing chocolate chip pumpkin bread) has also started an initiative that encourages families to sit down and eat meals together. Studies show that regular family meals help promote confidence, self esteem and good grades in children. It aids conversation skills and can train you to eat healthier.
Visit GetBacktotheTable.com for a variety of recipes and tips for making mealtime even easier!
Libby’s believes the table is the heart of the home and that families suffer in more ways than one when they are struggling to put food on it. Because of this, they are teaming up with the local chapter of Habitat for Humanity. Three homes will be completed this year and given to less fortunate families. Libby’s will provide the recipient families with a place to enjoy a meal together and everything they need to make it happen. Each home will be supplied with:
-A pantry stocked with Libby’s products to make simple, easy meals for the family
-A dining table for 6 to have a place to enjoy a meal together
-Place settings for at least 6 family members
Do your part for these worthwhile causes by remembering to take your canned goods to a local Fresh Market between now and Saturday, October 22. Small efforts by many make a big difference.
You can also catch up with Libby's on Facebook or Twitter. Take a moment to help get the word out.
Disclosure: Although I am being compensated by Libby's for helping promote this campaign, I am a huge fan of good causes and helping others. The opinions expressed are my own.