A Thought for Shabbat

What if everyone in our community bought one extra can or other non-perishable every time he or she went to the grocery store, then brought […]

What if everyone in our community bought one extra can or other non-perishable every time he or she went to the grocery store, then brought it to CBJ to donate to Second Harvest?   Or brought it to their child’s school, or to Second Harvest directly?

Picking up sushi for lunch at Whole Foods?  Grab a can of lentil soup.

Big shop for the week at Lucky’s?  An extra box of crackers would be good.

Heading to Trader Joe’s for some samples and snacks for the kids’ lunches?  How about a couple of packages of pasta?

Think about it:  we have about 800 adults in this community times how many trips to the grocery store each week?  3?  4?  7?  Not to mention when our kids run to the store.  We’re talking about thousands of items a  week.  Over the course of the year?  As a community, we could donate hundreds of thousands of cans of soup, sauce, baby wipes, etc.  The impact on those in need would be huge.

But the impact on each of us would be even greater.  Establishing a rhythm of donating every time we shop, even if it’s only a 79-cent can of tuna fish, makes us into conscious daily givers.  It’s different to shop for others as well as for ourselves.

And think of the impact this will have on our kids.  Every time we’re at the grocery, they see us grabbing an extra item, and telling them why we’re doing it.  Better yet, let them pick what you’re going to drop in the basket, and send them to get it from the shelves.  Now everyone in the family is involved in the mitzvah of helping the needy, and everyone is empowered in the decision-making process as well.

Now think of the impact when you encourage your friends from Central Middle School, and from Beth Am, and from your kids’ soccer leagues, and from your book group to buy something extra for people in need every time they shop.   And think of the impact it can have when your kids challenge their friends to try to donate as much as they do.  The Valley term for this would be “going viral”.  Others may call it “the ripple effect”.

I’m going to call it ONE CAN.    ONE CAN donate 250,000 non-perishables this year.

Shabbat Shalom, everyone!!