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Bank of America Give-A-Meal Program: Working Together to Feed Those in Need

No one should have to face hunger, but for many families in New Mexico, hunger is a reality. It proves more than sobering to realize New Mexico ranks #4 for overall hunger nationwide and #1 in childhood hunger. Yet, even in the face of such odds, you can make a difference and feed those in need. A donation you make to Roadrunner Food Bank from now through December 31st has tremendous impact thanks to Bank of America.

Through December 31st, for every $1 given by donors, Bank of America will donate $2 more.  To receive the match, donors can give here. Keep your gift local by entering your zip code and select “Your Local Food Bank” to direct your gift to Roadrunner Food Bank.

Your donation will lessen the burden and give peace of mind to our clients, whether they have 1 or 2 mouths to feed, or for an entire extended family. At a South Valley Library mobile food pantry on the Wednesday before this past Thanksgiving, we met Maria. Maria is a grandmother in her late 60’s who has to feed not only herself, but her daughter’s family as well. Over three generations to feed! Maria told us she cannot imagine how she could cover food for children and grandchildren at the end of the month without Roadrunner’s support.

This December, consider working with us and Bank of America to feed those in need like Maria and her family. Thank you!

Mom and boys


Snapshots of Gratitude

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In a fast-paced, buzzing holiday season as we tend to celebrate in the United States, we give a lot of mentions (if not lip service) to the “lofty” ideals of charity, generosity and another G-word: gratitude. Yet, at Roadrunner, we want to honor, take seriously, and live out all three of these ideals. We would love nothing more than to demonstrate how these “lofty” ideals are perhaps not so lofty; in that, anyone regardless of socioeconomic background, of wealth can live out these ideals daily. At Roadrunner, we find ourselves incredibly fortunate to have the mission and platform of conveying these values among our staff, our volunteers, our clients, and the broader community we serve.

When you work in an organization like Roadrunner whose mission is to relieve human suffering of all kinds (hunger, homelessness, and more), you need to find silver linings in sadder news. Recently, the National Center on Family Homelessness issued a report, “America’s Youngest Outcasts.” The report concluded that there were over 2.5 million homeless children nationally in 2013, with childhood homelessness across the United States increasing over 8 percent in one year. Of all 50 states, New Mexico ranks 46th in childhood homelessness, only 4 states ahead than the lowest nationally. We at Roadrunner know childhood homelessness places a greater impact on our already high childhood hunger rates, too. Instead of staying in frustration and sadness, though, we choose the route of working harder to feed all of our hungry clients, including our hungry children. They are counting on us.

Below are some examples in recent weeks of charity, generosity, and gratitude we have expressed and/or witnessed.

We are grateful for all our volunteers, including those volunteers whose day jobs are in education. On November 14th, a crew of teachers from Our Lady of Annunciation Catholic School here in Albuquerque helped sort produce in advance of our increasing holiday food demands. To extend their work from teaching values of diligence, integrity, and service to practicing them on our Roadrunner warehouse floor proved awe-inspiring. Our Lady of Annunciation Catholic School teachers and other volunteers sustain our operations of feeding the hungry throughout the holiday season and year-round.

We at Roadrunner couldn’t imagine where we would be without the generosity of our faith community partners. On November 17th, Clyde Stanfield and other members from St. John’s United Methodist Church here in Albuquerque came by to donate over 1,000 pounds of foodstuffs to Roadrunner.  As much as we aim to supply our food agency partners with consistent food distribution, we are more than grateful and honored to also receive donations from these partners. It just goes to show how important collaboration in feeding New Mexico’s hungriest proves to be.

We are grateful to host organizations whose volunteers not only grow and raise nourishing food as day jobs, but who also step up their efforts by helping us sort food here. On November 20th, not only did the New Mexico Farm and Livestock Bureau (NMFLB) donate over 1,000 pounds of pinto beans and other foodstuffs to us and give us $1,650 to sustain our operations. Some 40 NMFLB members also volunteered in our warehouse, performing tasks which ranged from repackaging over 1,000 pounds of cereal to sorting potatoes and mounds of produce. As NMFLB member Boe Lopez shared during his time here, “We’re glad to return to Roadrunner, as it was a rewarding experience volunteering last year and there are no doubt food needs to fill.”

We are grateful for acts of creativity and generosity from the people we serve. During our November 12th Mobile Food Pantry at Lomas & Edith, one of our clients, Dennis Gray, said he wanted to write something for Roadrunner. In less than 24 hours, he sent us this beautiful poem which highlights what we strive to do every day: To leave no one hungry anymore.

Today At Roadrunner Food Bank

“I went to the wonderful Roadrunner Delivery today.

Dragging my rolling suitcase along my merry way.

There was over 100 people there that I could see,

And I volunteered, which was great for me.

 

Suddenly 18 to 20 kids did appear

And at each table, stood to the rear.

All in pilgrims hats and handing out food.

Each one with a smile and not one was rude.

 

Every month this food bank is always open,

And like most of you, I am always hopin’,

To be in a better place to help myself,

And buy my own food to stock my shelf.

 

Until then I will run down the road,

And thank Roadrunner for lightening the load.

On my fixed income I am mostly poor,

But I am not ever hungry. Not anymore.”

 

So, as Thanksgiving and Christmas rush by into the New Year of 2015, let us challenge ourselves and extend our vision of charity, generosity and gratitude to go beyond the holidays. Roadrunner Food Bank and its staff and volunteers strive to do so now. We only wish to share out these ideals while feeding as many hungry New Mexicans as we can. Will you join us?

 

For more information on how you can donate or give to sustain us, visit our website at www.rrfb.org. To witness more examples of gratitude through the season, “like” us on Facebook at “Roadrunner Food Bank of New Mexico”; or, you can follow us on Instagram at “Roadrunner Food Bank” or on Twitter at “@Roadrunner Fd Bnk.” Thank you all!

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One Day in September

School can be so much fun.  Crayons, markers, and backpacks!  Seeing friends and hanging out on the playground.  It is a time of hard work for students, but also a time that hungry children can count on school subsidized meals – at least twice a day.  But it isn’t enough.  In New Mexico, one in three children is at risk of hunger.  Dinner time, weekends, holidays and summers are tough for kids and worrisome for their parents.  During their time away from school, low-income children and their families stress about how they will eat. Without enough calories, how can we expect children to thrive, learn and grow?   (more…)


Water Donations Are Important Too!

Thanks to a generous donation from Crystal Springs, Roadrunner Food Bank has roughly $16,000 worth of water to distribute to partners across our state.  Water is very important for hunger organizations to have on hand.  Why?  Some of the locations where we bring and then distribute food have no or little access to utilities.  And hungry people living in those remote locations not only are experiencing hunger, but they also are trying to figure out how to keep their perishable food from spoiling or must haul in water to drink, wash dishes, do laundry, etc. (more…)


We got the grant – THANK YOU!

We cannot thank our dedicated community of supporters enough!  We have won a $60,000 grant from Walmart’s Fight Hunger, Spark Change campaign to help solve child hunger – and it’s all because of your votes!  Roadrunner Food Bank will be given $45,000 for our Childhood Hunger Initiative (CHI).  In addition, three of our partner agencies—the Rio Grande Food Project, The Storehouse and the Holy Family St. Vincent de Paul’s program—will also receive $5,000 each! (more…)


An Honor From Our Community

Earlier this month, Roadrunner Food Bank was honored in a very special way by Albuquerque Business First.  During a breakfast event among top-notch non-profit peers, local businesses, philanthropic community members and others, Roadrunner Food Bank was selected as the winner of the 2014 Non-profit of the Year Award in the Human Services category. (more…)


Cardboard and Plastic and Aluminum – Oh my!

We partnered with Expo New Mexico and the New Mexico State Fair for the first time this year to help feed our hungry neighbors while reducing waste.  We set up 42 recycling collection bins all around the grounds of Expo New Mexico.  When guests placed aluminum, plastic or cardboard in the bins, they helped solve hunger while protecting the environment. (more…)


Your Vote Counts During Hunger Action Month!

On Monday, September 15, we invite you to take a daily action during Hunger Action Month in the form of an online vote!  Roadrunner Food Bank will be competing with about 130 other food banks across the nation for a chance to win a $60,000 grant.  With a quick click of the mouse, your daily vote could earn funds for both Roadrunner Food Bank and three of our partner agencies that help us distribute food. (more…)


It’s Hunger Action Month, and We’re All About Orange!

Carrots, oranges, cantaloupe and habanero peppers– while there aren’t a lot of orange foods, the color orange can help us ensure that hungry people in New Mexico have enough to eat this September.  That’s because September is Hunger Action Month, and the color orange raises awareness about hunger. (more…)


Food, Farming & Football

For the second consecutive year, the New Mexico State football team’s season opener will coincide with Agriculture Day as the Aggies face the Cal-Poly University Mustangs, Thursday, Aug. 28, at 6 p.m. at the Aggie Memorial Stadium.  The Ag Day tailgating festivities will take place in Parking Lot A, just north of the stadium, from 3-6 p.m. (more…)


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