Giving Thanks to the Less Fortunate

Sydney Rodriguez, Vice-President

What’s the point of Thanksgiving without giving thanks, right? I mean, it is called THANKSgiving for a reason! While we have so much to be grateful for, it is just as important to give back to people who aren’t as fortunate. I don’t know about you, but nothing warms my heart more than putting a smile on someone’s face. I’m happy to say that this year, Key Club and Avid’s Thanksgiving Food Drive to Island Harvest did just that!  In one of my recent articles, I mentioned how Key Club has been trying to figure out how to give back to the community in the safest way possible despite everything going on in the world. Because of this, Key Club and Avid decided to host a food drive to the Island Harvest food bank! 

As a member of Feeding America, the nation’s largest hunger-relief organization, the Island Harvest food bank has been leading hunger-relief on Long Island since 1992. Through their innovative programming and network of community programmers, they have been able to distribute fresh produce, meat, and non-perishable items throughout Long Island and assist thousands of Long Islanders for many years. It all started with Linda Breitstone, a woman with a strong desire to help those in need. She had much resentment towards local convenience stores throwing away good food while a safe house for women and children was right down the street. As a response, she established Island Harvest and their mission “to end hunger and reduce food waste on Long Island”. Since then, Island Harvest was able to emerge as Long Island’s largest hunger-relief organization. Their many volunteers and staff have been able to deliver millions of pounds of food to a network of 570 Long Island-based food pantries, soup kitchens, and other non-profit organizations that offer feeding services for those in need since then as well. They have even begun to attack hunger in targeted and strategic ways, and the most notable example of this is their Weekend Backpack Feeding Program. Started in 2006, this initiative has provided 35,000+ packs of nutritious food to schoolchildren who rely on school lunches and breakfasts and may not receive solid meals on weekends. 

As you can see, Island Harvest is a great organization that has not only given back to the less fortunate on Long Island but strengthened the community as a whole. The East Rockaway Key Club and Avid are very proud to say 46 boxes of food were donated to this food bank! Thank you to all of the East Rockaway families for generously donating to those in need, I can’t wait to see how many boxes will be donated next year!