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Posts Tagged ‘food bank’

Tomorrow night we’ll be helping out at the Ottawa Food Bank.  We’ve done this a couple of times before and it is a good way to let kids make a direct impact on our neighbourhood.

Things to think about:

  • Food Bank visits are pretty popular around big holidays.  Think about doing a food drive/or Unit visit when the food need is still great, but the helpers are fewer.
  • Because of the popularity, book a fall food bank visit early.
  • Make sure your girls wear clothes they can get dirty.
  • And, if there is enough room (check with your Food Bank) invite the parents along (it takes a lot of muscle to move a lot of food — the more the merrier).  And it is fun to see your kids working with their parents.

What you’ll do:

  • It is always good to have the girls show up with a non perishable food item – or a toiletry item of some kind.  That’s the point, after all.
  • Depending on the facility you’re visiting, you may get to see a food sorting operation, a big fridge (I don’t know why, but kids like big fridges), and lots of food.
  • The representative will probably talk to you about what the Food Bank does, where they get food, and they’ll talk about what the Food Bank needs.  And what it doesn’t.
  • And then you’ll probably sort food into categories so it can be distributed properly.

And that’s it.  A fairly simple meeting that has a big punch of meaning.  Book it early, and give it a try.

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As I said in my previous post, we’re taking advantage of the Ottawa Girl Guide Archives to provide our meeting tomorrow night.  But there are lots of other neat (and often free) things available to book.

  • Police Station Tours – The Ottawa Police Service offers evening tours of their facility for kids 8 years of age and over, but they’ve modified the program for us (Canadian Brownies are 7 – 8 years old) and have allowed us to book a tour.   We’re looking forward to it.
  • Loblaws offers cooking schools for kids – it is a bit expensive ($10 – $12 per girl) but still pretty neat – and great for one of the Key to Active Living components.
  • Thursday night seems to be the night that galleries and museums are open in the evening.  (Sadly, we meet on Tuesday so have never done this).  Admission to the permanent collection at the National Gallery of Canada is free on Thursday nights from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. Or, if you visit a special exhibition, you also get access to the permanent collection.
  • Ottawa pools offer a great group rate (around $2 per participant) – and, as they provide the lifejackets and lifeguards, this is a yellow level event (as of Feb 2011).  You still need to provide ratio of 1:5 but it is pretty neat.  We did some of the Brownie Splash program two years ago. 
  • Food Bank visits are great to reinforce the “lend a hand” spirit.  
    Bring as many adults as possible to make this work well. 
    Wear closed toe shoes and grubby clothes.  Girls and adults will likely be sorting food – this is dusty work.
    Book early.  Seasonal visits (Thanksgiving and Christmas especially) are tough to get…but they always need help so go in the “off-season”.

That’s all I can think of… does anyone else have suggestions (for Ottawa, or wherever you are).

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