For Sure

Sharing the Bounty


My work for the last 23 years has been in the field of philanthropy -- or, etymologically, "the caring of man." Essentially, philanthropy involves caring for, nourishing, improving and enhancing the quality of life for human beings.

Yeah.  I'm a professional bleeding heart . . .

Anyway, there are several issues that are particularly close to my (bleeding) heart:  women's issues, literacy, expanding access to the arts, conservation, hunger and food insecurity.

In November, as it gets closer to Thanksgiving (here in the US), we start thinking a little more about bounty . . . and plenty . . . and food.  We acknowledge what we have . . . and we share the excess.  Food drives for local food pantries seem to be everywhere this time of year.

Tom's place of work had one earlier this month, with prizes going to the floor bringing in the most food (based on weight).


The cost of admission to my Fall Master Gardener conference last Saturday was a donation to the local food bank.


And this weekend, the Clark family sponsored their 5th annual food drive in my neighborhood.

Opportunity is everywhere!  I hope you'll look for ways to donate food to your local food bank or pantry not just in November, but throughout the year.  (Because food insecurity is not seasonal!)

As you can probably tell, I'm very enthused about Carole's Ten on Tuesday topic this week:  10 Items Your Local Food Pantry Can Use

  1. Essential, nutritious foods that families like to eat - breakfast cereals, applesauce, fruit juice (preferably in cans), dried fruit
  2. Non-perishable food items - rice, canned vegetables and fruits, canned potatoes, dry lentils and beans
  3. Protein-rich options - canned meat (chicken, SPAM), pasta sauce WITH meat, beef stew, corned beef hash, macaroni and cheese, peanut butter
  4. Whole grains - oatmeal, granola, pasta, rice, couscous
  5. Hearty foods - canned soups, canned ravioli, canned chili WITH meat
  6. Fresh vegetables (from your garden or the market) -- check with your food pantry to make certain they'll accept fresh vegetables (ours does!) and to make delivery arrangements
  7. Pet food - basic cat and dog food
  8. Baking staples - flour, sugar, raisins, vegetable oil, chocolate chips
  9. Condiments - salt and pepper, basic spices, ketchup, mustard
  10. Non-food items related - dishwashing detergent, sponges, paper towels, toothpaste, hand soap, lotion

(And. . . just remember. . . no rusted cans, glass jars, or food past its expiration date.  Think twice before you pull stuff out from the depths of your own pantry.  If you don't want it, chances are the food bank won't want it either!)

This fall, share your bounty with your local food pantry! 


Join the fun!  Sign up for Ten on Tuesday here, and check out other Ten on Tuesday lists here.



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Everything you say is so true and so important - especially that bit about donating year round and not just during the holidays. Summers are rough for food pantries, I can tell you that. It's sad that so many people here have food insecurity while others have so much and I love that those of us who can share, do share. Thanks for all you do, Kym.


Excellent reminders and list of items needed! You are what we should all aspire (and work) to be!!


The depth of your information is so important to someone like me who would get peanut butter and more peanut butter. The ravioli, baking items, PET FOOD...thanks for the assistance!


Great ideas and reminders! Thank you, Kym.


Yes - there are indeed opportunities all around us. Especially at this time of the year. Great list!


Great list! Our church ladies group always gives to our county food pantry. I wish every small town had a pantry since some that need might not have transportation to get to the county one...


thank you for the general list...all great things to remember. our local food pantry really suffers in the summer - the hungry kids are home from school and need three meals instead of just one and everyone is in "vacation" mode and not thinking about donations.


Good idea about the canned chicken. I usually do soups and vegetables and pasta. Not very filling!

Diana Troldahl

Great tips :-}
Ypsilanti's homeless shelter, S.O.S. is our favored charity. We do our best to give something each year. Both Oscar and I have had times of scarcity, and it is our way to give back the help we received. When things became secure for us this past year, one of the very best things about it was being able to help.

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