Each year the staff and volunteers at Black River Good Neighbor Services collect food and toys during December and distribute them to deserving families throughout the area. This distribution dates back to well before the creation of BRGNS, but our staff and volunteers are proud to continue the tradition and to serve our clients in this manner. We at BRGNS offer our sincere thanks to all who made this season’s annual holiday food and gift distribution possible.
Our staff and volunteers packed and then distributed dinners and toys to many community residents who would otherwise have a bleak holiday. On Dec.18, some 30 volunteers packed boxes and then on Dec. 20, 35 teams of volunteers gathered at Fletcher Farm and fanned out across the area, carrying boxes and bags to over 100 households with 214 individuals including more than 60 children.
Thanks go to Lee and Linda Potter, Jane Pixley, and Claire Walker for coordinating the distribution. In all we delivered nearly $11,000 worth of food and toys to people in Ludlow, Cavendish, Proctorsville, Plymouth, Mount Holly, and Belmont. While this project is a centerpiece of the Black River Good Neighbor Services’ program and has grown substantially over the years, we all wish that it wasn’t needed.
The process begins early in the year, but gears up in earnest with the annual Stuff-a-Bus in Ludlow, followed by the Okemo Cares and Shares food drive. Thanks go to all who worked at the Stuff-a-Bus, and at the Okemo food drive, and especially the Okemo staff for making the food drive happen. And, importantly we thank all those who donated food or money at either event.
Toys and additional food were donated by many area organizations and to numerous individuals who gave cash, which was used to buy perishable and non-perishable food items. A special thanks is due to Claire Walker and to Linda Potter for their superb coordination amongst all of these organizations.
Lastly, the Fletcher Farm School gets special thanks for donating space for all of this to happen. This is truly a community effort, and the BRGNS’ officers, staff and clients deeply thank all of the many individual volunteers and donors who make this program possible each year.
John Dean, BRGNS Board President