Reach out Sun Lakes

Ellen Engel

Monthly food collection drives sponsored by Reach Out Sun Lakes on behalf of Matthew’s Crossing Food Bank in Chandler have begun to increase now that most of the summer has passed and the results for September were encouraging, indeed. Generous Sun Lakes residents contributed 312.5 pounds of nourishing food and $395 in cash.

And in pre-deadline, first-week October collections, another 414 pounds of food and $400 were contributed with more to come in the second week collections that occurred after this month’s Splash deadline. So the 2015 totals so far are ahead of last year’s totals already – more than two tons of basic foodstuffs and over $3,000 in cash.

Contributed dollars are used to pay for basic foods not normally donated, and all food items are ultimately channeled to more than 600 needy families in Chandler.

Any Sun Lakes resident may contribute at established pickup points sponsored by the Sun Lakes Duplicate Bridge Club and the Sun Lakes Democratic Club. Other local organizations, including the Sun Lakes Jewish congregation and Unity of Sun Lakes, also contribute regularly; your organization can do so, as well. But membership in local clubs and congregations is not a criterion. In fact, many individual donors show up from all over Sun Lakes at the two club-sponsored pickup points.

The Bridge Club pickup takes place at Risen Savior Lutheran Church on Alma School Road from 12:30-1:20 p.m. on the first Monday of each month, and the Sun Lakes Democratic Club accepts contributions on the second Monday at 6:30 p.m. at the Sun Lakes Country Club (SLCC). For those who cannot make it to the formal pickup locations at specific times, a collection point is also open during normal business hours daily at the SLCC.

What practical results do your donations generate? A single contributed dollar will provide a total of about four nutritious meals for a needy recipient or family. We cannot measure the pound of food value in terms of specific meals, but it is unquestionably high, and our Sun Lakes community continues to have significant impact on meeting the need, both through the monthly Reach Out food drive and with volunteers who work at the food bank itself, located at 1368 Arizona Avenue in Chandler. The Crossing always needs additional volunteer help. If this direct participation activity appeals to you, please call the Volunteer Coordinator at Matthew’s Crossing at 480-857-2296 for information.

For further information about Reach Out Sun Lakes, please contact Ellen Engel at 480-802-0425 or email her at [email protected].