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I am riding the Western Massachusetts Food Bank's, Will Ride 4 Food fundraiser on September 26.  I invite you to contribute. 

I have been connected with the food bank all my professional life.  This started in the 90's when I managed Nothampton's emergency shelter.  Feeding 20 people every day, the Food Bank played a major role.  It impacted us with not only edibles, but also improving spirits.  

One of the things the shelter would get from the food bank were cans from the USDA, about a gallon, like a bucket to paint.  I remember the plain white label, with plain big black print.  It read this, or at least something very close to it, "MEAT PRODUCT (CHICKEN)".  Open the can, tip it forward and you found shredded meat suspended in a gelatinous ooze, slowly filling the pot.

Those staying at the shelter shared the cooking duties.  Interestingly, those leading the cooking teams tended to avoid the cans of MEAT PRODUCT (CHICKEN).  This changed when one of the cooks proposed a contest to make the best meal, using MEAT PRODUCT (CHICKEN).   

This kicked off a friendly competition that lasted several weeks and produced  some imaginative, good meals and some real fun.  It also resulted in the creation, or at least adaptation of several recipes that included MEAT PRODUCT (CHICKEN), and were used going forward.

Since my shelter days I have gone on to work with individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, many living on fixed incomes in homes staffed around the clock. I see the impact the food bank makes not only in providing affordable nutrition, but also education around food safety and healthy eating.

Perhaps you have thought about, or have been meaning to donate to the food bank.  Here is your chance.

You can go to my fundraising page and support this important institution.

 

Fundraising page:  http://www.PledgeReg.com/304133

 

Thanks for your support,

Peter

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The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts is a 501 (c) (3) EIN: 04-2751023 nonprofit organization

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