"If there’s a world here in a hundred years, it’s going to be saved by tens of millions of little things. The powers-that-be can break up any big thing they want. They can corrupt it or co-opt it from the inside, or they can attack it from the outside. But what are they going to do about 10 million little things? They break up two of them, and three more like them spring up!"
- Pete Seeger, in YES! Magazine

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

"Every Little Bit Helps"

How many times have you committed time or money or goods to someone or some charity only to come away feeling, well, like your contribution was somehow insignificant? Like your deed, your donation, has gone unrecognized? Was perhaps even unwelcome?

If you haven't felt this yet, try giving a little to a REALLY large organization.

Go ahead.

Don't be put off if it looks like your bundle of goodies is no more than a dust bunny for the corner shelf of a giant warehouse. Don't do it for recognition or thanks. Do it because, as we were told today by perhaps one of the largest food banks in the country, "Every little bit helps!"

The project:
Donate the box of foodstuffs collected from Mom's pantry during the cleaning project.
(While we were there, we also helped a volunteer put an entire pallet of food into a tiny Toyota so it could be delivered to a neighborhood kitchen. A very entertaining volunteer effort, and he was ever so grateful for the unexpected help.)

15 minutes (including the car stuffing)

Why bother?
Sharing Mom's plentiful pantry with people who could use a little help.

Worth it?
I confess I was pretty intimidated when V and I peeked inside the warehouse at the Los Angeles Food Bank. The place is ENORMOUS! And there were caseloads of food being loaded into various vehicles for delivery all over the Los Angeles Basin. Add to that the 18-wheeler that pulled up to make a delivery. I realized our box wouldn't provide nearly as much help as the local pantries and kitchens could use.

I suppose it was a good thing, then, when Mom voiced her thoughts on our relatively insignificant contribution to a warehouse volunteer who quickly put us back on line. "Oh, don't feel that way! Every little bit helps!"

The things we brought will be stacked with other people's donations, and eventually build a case, then a pallet, delivered as needed. Our contribution WILL help folks in need. Especially if you add another box...and you...and you.


  1. There is a group that
    will be collecting food for local food banks. They'll be meeting at St. Timothy¢s parking lot at 9am on this Sat. They¢ll distribute the grocery bags and go over procedures, then get
    people going. The door to door
    appeals should take no more than three hours, then meet back at the
    parking lot. Anyone who can help pick up the bags will meet up same
    time and place on Mon. the 19th. That¢s it.

  2. Thanks Jen for sharing about what you are doing. I look forward to checking out your blog in a little bit and keeping in touch.
    We too have decided to make 2009 a year for community volunteerism. Still working on whether we will do lots of different (smaller) projects or something long term that could last all year and perhaps into the future... time will tell, still considering options.


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