Our youngest son is a cub scout and this weekend he participated in the scout's annual 'food-for-charity' collection drive. Not to be critical, but on Saturday the scouts left bags on people's doors saying they would be back Sunday to collect donations - one day isn't a great deal of notice for anyone ... Overlooking that, I was surprised at how generous people were. I'd guess that at least 10% of households in our designated neighborhood contributed. You're hard pressed to get 10% participation in anything ...
Sunday was a beautiful Indian Summer day with the sun out and temperatures in the '70s. As expected, the scouts turned the donation drive into a competition, racing to see who could collect the most bags of food. It was fascinating to see how competitive some of them were. 'Course the real highlight was checking out the dead deer at the entrance to the community. As one of the moms put it - 'I guess they might as well know about the circle of life.' My kid was a little more realistic about it when he informed me that a blue car had nailed the deer. Apparently part of the car bumper was embedded in the carcus ... Yech.
So if that wasn't inspiring, the next part should be. After the donations were collected, we hauled them to our locale charity food pantry - Reston Interfaith. I've occasionally donated money to this outfit, but had never actually visitied them - so much for being actively involved in my community. The staff gave us a quick tour of their facility, even showing us the food pantry which was surprisingly small - maybe the size of a master bedroom. We were told that all of the food the scouts had collected (probably a total of 500 bags), would only last three days.
On a shoestring budget, Reston Interfaith regularly support 300+ families offering food, clothing, cooking lessons, child care, job skills, interview support, etc. Those 300+ families include over 100 elderly who are largely dependent on Reston Interfaith for survival. These folks are amazing !!! I was massively impressed.