WHATS IN THIS BLOG:
• A game-changer: children helping starving children.
• 100 kids and adults packaged 12,000 meals in 2 hours.
• I look terrific in a hairnet!
LAST WEEK I ROLLED UP AT 7 AM (YES, I CRAWLED OUT OF BED AT 5:30 AM ON A SATURDAY). To my horror, the registration lady said “You can’t do this, because you are wearing sandals. You need proper shoes.” Since I drove 30 minutes to get there, I debated with her since I am an engineer after all. We deadlocked until a well-dressed young Hispanic woman intervened. “You could cover each of your feet with a hairnet.” I laughed at the idea, but the registration lady accepted me on this basis, and handed me three hairnets.
Most folks were directed into the large group, maybe 100 volunteers, assigned to packaging the food. The pics show the high-nutrition food in four large bins. Two people dipped and poured the foods into a funnel. My first job was to hold a package under the funnel, weigh it, and pass it along to folks who sealed the package with a device that looked like a stapler. Altogether six folks on our team.
After 32 packages were filled, they were boxed, and our group cheered loudly and shouted “Box number 1”. After that it became a race to fill boxes. We worked for two hours. My team of six worked in a frenzy and won the competition…..we filled 22 boxes! The prize was a T-shirt…..mine said “Feed my starving children and change the world.”
AT 9 AM WE WERE TOLD TO STOP. IN TWO HOURS THE WHOLE GROUP OF 100 HAD PACKAGED 12,000 MEALS, WHICH WOULD FEED 106 CHILDREN FOR ONE YEAR. INCREDIBLE!
The packages will be sent to Haiti, which was devastated by an enormous earthquake in 2010.
The organizers, known by FMSC (Feed My Starving Children), were extremely well-prepared:
• Food handlers had to use sanitary wipes, and wear plastic gloves.
• When the rice bin was empty, the food-supplier-guys would rush to refill it.
• Music was piped in to cheer us on: songs for the millennials, songs for the oldies like me, and Christian songs. I swayed and my feet danced when they played “Good golly miss Molly.”
• Children worked side-by-side with adults. Megan was about 12 and worked like a mule alongside her mom Kim. Amanda was a mom also, and since she had done this before, she helped me the engineer figure it all out.
• They inserted a quickie dance competition up on the stage, without anybody stopping work (except the dancers). I tried to get Megan or Kim or Amanda to go up with me to do a swing dance, but they declined.
Our team of six were fighters. We wanted to win. As a result, we won the shortest time to pack the first box, and we also won most boxes packed (22 boxes).
• The FMSC organization know how to make work seem like fun. I can say honestly that I enjoyed the experience, and felt like we accomplished a lot. Preparing a package of soy and rice that will be sent shortly to Haiti for kids who are malnourished or starving was hugely satisfying. A practical example of helping someone to hope!
• By including kids such as Megan in the work process, and aiming to help starving kids overseas, FMSC makes a real connection with adults. A very smart way to instill motivation into busy adults…..and to teach kids about empathy and love and giving.
• FMSC is a Christian organization (non-governmental or NGO). While the church is often criticized as being clubbish and judgmental, here is a powerful example of direct help by average churchgoers to save some of the 6,000 CHILDREN ACROSS THE WORLD WHO DIE EVERY DAY from causes relating to poverty.
• This event was sponsored by Sagebrush Community Church in Albuquerque. They deserve huge credit for enabling the vision in Albuquerque. Sagebrush have, after many separate events like the above, packaged about 1 million meals for starving children. This number feeds 3,000 children supper every day for a year!
• FMSC accepts donations also, in case you don’t live in a town that sponsors an FMSC event. Just click on the link if you would like to help.
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The Gray Nomad
Probing the practice of Christian believers……
Blessed are those who are generous, because they feed the poor.
[Book of Proverbs, chapter 22].