Food Shelf News – Oct 17, 2018

 Top: The children at work on the bounty for the Food Shelf. Photo by Deirdre Holmes

Keep baking
We want to thank everyone who has helped to make our Hunger is Hard, Baking is Easy program for the Charlotte Food Shelf so successful. For anyone interested in joining this effort, the new 2018-2019 schedule is out and includes information on packaging and labeling. If you would like to receive a copy, please email Holly Rochefort.

October distribution will be Wednesday evening, Oct. 24, so please drop off your goodies that week by noon on Wednesday at either the Congregational Church or 86 Spear St (there is a bin on the porch). Please keep in mind that Nov. 15 is Thanksgiving box time, and extra goodies are always welcome.

Our feedback has been fantastic—favorites include cookies and muffins. We are finding that six pieces per bag/plate is the perfect number. Many people want to take “just enough” and are conscious of food waste. So this just means your baking can go even further. Thank you to everyone who has participated. Let’s continue to spread the love (and the goodies)!

Thank you
Special thanks for financial support go to Janet Morrison, Deborah Cook, Trafton and Laura Crandell, Laura Cahners-Ford, the Charlotte Organic Coop and a donor who wishes to remain anonymous. 

Thank you to Charlotte Volunteer Fire and Rescue Services for the nonperishable food they collected at the Public Safety Fun Fair on Sept. 22. And thank you to Laura and Trafton Crandall, Colleen Armstrong, and Jensa and Jason Bushey for fresh fruits and vegetables.

Thank you to Durgha Luitel for an infant car seat.

As the Food Shelf gears up for the winter months and planning for the holidays, we’d like to extend a special thank you to all the faithful gardeners who supplied us with fresh produce throughout the season. 

Speaking of faithful gardeners: Kris Gerson, teacher at Charlotte Central School, and her assistant, Abby Foulk, again gardened with their class to benefit the Food Shelf. Last Spring Kris’s 2nd grade class planted and nurtured seedlings that were planted in the school garden. Their hard work has come to fruition, and now Kris’s first graders are reaping the bounty of last year’s plantings of potatoes, squash, ground cherries and Brussels sprouts. Thank you to all our children learning to garden and share with others. And special thanks to Deirdre Holmes, a major partner, inspiration and worker in the CCS garden.

Thank you to Feast East Company owner Suzanne Ferland who donated an entire carload of nonperishable food and two cases of high-grade containers to be used for dividing up large quantity items we purchase.

Thank you to Marcotte’s for the discount on our recent freezer purchase—and for removing the old one at no cost. A purchase such as this involves a lot of thought and time. Thank you to John Lavigne and Bill Doris for researching and managing this purchase. And to Cindy Tyler who organized all the baskets inside once the freezer arrived.

Thanks to everyone who saved egg cartons for us. We are very well supplied right now and don’t have space to store any more.

Vermont Food Bank
The Vermont Food Bank works with over 215 network and agency partners to provide nutritious Vermont-grown food to over 153,000 Vermonters throughout the state. In the past year the Charlotte Food Shelf received 7,287.5 pounds of food at a cost of $6,326, which includes delivery fees. Based on the amount of food received, the Food Shelf will pay a membership fee for the upcoming year is $150, a very good deal, all the way round.

Special assistance
The Food Shelf granted $540.63 in utility assistance in September.

Ten families received a $50 cash card. The Charlotte Congregational Church donated 10 gift vouchers for one gallon of milk and bread from Spears Corner Store.

Registration forms for holiday baskets will be available during Food Shelf hours on Oct. 23 and 24.  

Note that we have assistance to help with inspections for the new code for above-ground oil tanks.

Important upcoming 2018 Charlotte Food Shelf distribution dates
Wednesday evenings, 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Oct. 24, Nov. 7, 28
Thursday mornings 7:30 a.m. to 9:00 a.m., Oct. 25, Nov. 8, 29

Holiday baskets
Basket set up by volunteers: November 16, 8:00 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.
Saturday November 17, basket distribution: 11:00 a.m. to noon.

Financial assistance
As a reminder, the Food Shelf has some funds available for emergency assistance with fuel and electric bills. You may contact Cindi at (802) 425-3234 if you need assistance.

We are open to all community residents. Privacy is very important and respected in our mission of neighbor helping neighbor.

For emergency food call John at (802) 425-3130.
For emergency assistance (electricity, fuel) call Cindi at (802) 425-3234.
For more information call Karen at (802) 425-3252. 

Wish list
Needed items: aluminum foil, plastic wrap, toilet paper, spaghetti sauce, fruit pie mix, kid-healthy cereal.

Please keep in mind that we’re looking for warm winter wear for children. Sizes needed include toddler to adult.

We are a volunteer organization, so all donations you make to the Food Shelf go directly for food and/or assistance to our local neighbors in need. Checks may be mailed to Charlotte Food Shelf & Assistance, P.O. Box 83, Charlotte, VT 05445. Thank you.

Donated food drop-off locations
All nonperishable food donations may be dropped off at the Charlotte Library, the Charlotte Congregational Church vestry, Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church (main entrance) or at the Food Shelf during the distribution mornings. We request that all fresh foods be dropped off at the Food Shelf before the Wednesday distribution hours or before 7:30 a.m. on the Thursday distribution mornings.  

The Charlotte Food Shelf is located on the lower level of the Charlotte Congregational Church vestry.  Distribution days/times are posted on bulletin boards in the Charlotte Congregational Church Hall, at the Charlotte Library and at the Charlotte Senior Center. You may also call the Food Shelf at (802) 425-3252 for a recording of the distribution times.  

Facebook page
You can “like” us at our Facebook page—Charlotte Community Food Shelf and Assistance—and see photos and get updates on Food Shelf activities.