Happy December! With all the snow outside it already feels a lot like Christmas. Here at PRFC we are warm and cozy thanks to our new heat pumps and insulation. We feel fortunate to have such a comfortable space to work in as we wrap up our 2018 programs and make plans for the coming year.
Sadly, not everyone in the Piscataquis region has the same comforts. Hunger is an especially tough problem in our county. PRFC’s mission is to end hunger by making it easier for people to get the food they need to be healthy and thrive. We work especially hard to serve children and older adults who struggle to get enough to eat each day. But like all nonprofits, we cannot fight the battle alone. Community participation and support is crucial to our work. In the spirit of the giving season, would you help us help others by donating to one of PRFC’s hunger-relief programs? Here are three that could really benefit from your generosity:
PRFC’s FarmShare for Homebound Seniors program helps adults over 60 who are unable to leave their homes get free fresh produce from local farms each summer. For $50 you can sponsor a senior for the entire season! Every 2 weeks June through October, volunteers pack vegetables which are delivered to customers by our friends at Meals on Wheels. When we started FSHS in 2016 we served 12 customers in Milo and Dover Foxcroft. In 2018 we brought veggies to nearly 40 customers in Milo, Brownville, Dover, Dexter, Guilford, Sangerville, Monson, Shirley, and Greenville! We hope to reach even more folks in 2019. One of our first customers told us that “every delivery is like Christmas!” He also said that because of all the fresh food his appetite was better than ever. It’s heartwarming to hear how much folks enjoy the fresh, nutritious food and to know that we’re helping ease the strain on their tight budgets.
The Food Cupboard Spice Drive, is a unique program created by PRFC’s Project Assistant, Amy McGill. Spice Drive helps food cupboard customers make healthier, more enjoyable meals by providing them with herbs and seasonings to add flavor to plain ingredients. Each month we pick a “Spice of the Month”. Our partners at the Dollar Tree and Save-A-Lot in Dover-Foxcroft ask their customers to purchase the featured item as a donation to the cupboards. Meanwhile, Charlotte White Center’s Rising Star group gets together with Mayo Regional Hospital’s Dietician Whitney Gould and Food Service Director Tyler Parkhurst to prepare samples of a low-cost recipe that includes the featured ingredient. The samples are made available at food cupboard distributions as inspiration to give the spice a try. It works! Customers say they love the variety of spices offered. A $12 donation is all it takes to help one person keep their spice rack full all year.
Last but not least, PRFC’s Free Summer Meals Expansion Project helps make sure no child is hungry when school is out. Maine’s Summer Food Service Program funds free breakfasts and lunches for children 18 or younger all summer long. Hot and cold meals prepared by “Summer Meal Sponsors” such as schools and municipalities are served to kids at sites scattered around the county. PRFC helps sponsors add variety to the meals by funding the purchase of fresh local vegetables and fruits to add to the kids’ plates. We also help start up new sponsors and satellite sites. In 2018 the Town of Milo became a Summer Meal Sponsor with PRFC’s assistance. We were thrilled! By coordinating with RSU 41, which was already a Sponsor, meals were available for kids in Milo from the day school ended in June until the day it restarted in August. It’s hard to think about summer with winter on the way but we are already thinking about how to reach even more kids in 2019. Contributions of any amount will help us get the job done or you can sponsor a kid for $50 for the season.
Visit our website www.prfoodcenter.org/donations to make a donation through PayPal or by check. For more information email us at email@example.com, or call (207) 802-8230. Just let us know which program you would like to support. We are grateful for your generosity and hope you have a wonderful holiday!