Andrea Judge first became involved with our food cupboard when she was on the Copper Beech Elementary School PTA board and was responsible for coordinating and dropping off donations from the school. When the shutdown started, she spoke with Deborah, the cupboard’s interim manager, about volunteering. She went once or twice to help by herself but realized that her whole family–husband David and children Gwen, Heather, and Calvin–would be able to help.
“We started at first to have something to do outside of the house during quarantine. We joked that what we really needed was a project to work on in even more confined space while wearing masks and gloves. I wanted the kids to see that even though their social lives and friends and fun stuff had been put on hold, they still had it very good. It has definitely been an exercise in teamwork and it turns out that we all have our own ways of wanting to do things. But we have enjoyed working together and have a sense of pride when we leave every week. We like seeing how much the inventory changes from week to week and we enjoy using our creativity to figure out how to substitute items.”
David says, “COVID-19 has taken away many of our friend, family, and community connections. Volunteering has given us a chance to make a connection with a great organization and directly help people in need of food.”
And Gwen sums up her experience: “Going in there makes me realize how lucky we are to have a choice of food. I also never have to think about saving food to make sure I have some later.”
Andrea says that volunteering at the cupboard has really benefited her kids. “They have learned a lot about organization and teamwork and they are more aware of how lucky they are to have food security.”