Editor’s Note: This information was provided to Patch via a news release from the Food Pantry of Waukesha County.
The 10th annual Neighbors Helping Neighbors Food & Fund drive to benefit the Food Pantry of Waukesha County is scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 10, from noon to 2:30 p.m. in the subdivisions of Tall Grass, Rolling Ridge and Meadowbrook.
Coordinators Dave Rebro and Shannon Majewski encourage residents of the subdivisions to leave groceries on their porches or at the end of their driveways on Saturday morning. Later that day, children from the neighborhood collect the food with help from adult family members. Monetary contributions are made via checks made out to the Food Pantry of Waukesha County.
It all started 11 years ago when a group of eight families from the neighborhood were sharing a Thanksgiving meal. Each person at the table was asked to offer up a blessing for which he or she was grateful. When they realized how many things they could be grateful for, the group decided to share their good fortune with those less fortunate.
“We all wanted to give back to the community, and we all thought it could also be a valuable lesson for the children to learn,” Rebro said.
That first year money was collected and a contribution was delivered directly to the Pantry by a few neighborhood families. When they arrived, they discovered the Pantry was open and distributing groceries. They observed the long waiting line of clients and a parking lot filled to capacity. The sight of all those people in need really made an impression on the group, particularly the children. One of the children present remarked, “After seeing the long line of people waiting to get food, I realized how lucky we are to have what we have...and it felt good to give to others.”
“We were all so surprised that day how the clients looked and dressed just like us,” Rebro said. “It really hit home that a situation could easily arise that could put anyone of us in that receiving line. That really opened our eyes and touched our hearts.”
Over the last 10 years, the neighbors have continued to expand their efforts and now collect food and funds from the three subdivisions. In 10 years the group has collected more than 28 tons of food and more than $20,000 for the food pantry. Three businesses have also joined in the partnership to make the drive more successful – Modern Ink Signs & Graphics, RW Signs & Graphics and Heritage, a Communications Resource.