My name is Charlene. I’ve received food from Second Harvest Food Bank for the past several years, and it means the world to me. But I also come to the Food Bank once a week to volunteer. And I come here for one specific reason.
For more than 20 years, I was an alcoholic. During that time, I didn’t give back or help those who needed it—my alcoholism made me a selfish person. So that’s why I’m here today sorting vegetables, packing boxes and doing whatever I can as a volunteer. It’s my way of trying to do the right thing. I’m proud to say I’ve now been sober for 20 years.
Now, when I stand over large boxes of vegetables and sort food for people who are hungry, my heart goes out to them: the seniors who are hungry and the children who wonder if they’ll eat dinner tonight. Sometimes I don’t take food home for myself because I know someone needs it more than I do.
It’s a joy for me to share what I have with others who are hungry. I do this simply because it’s the right thing to do. I’m overwhelmed when they write me notes, thanking me for what I have given them. With tears in their eyes, they thank me for even the smallest bag of food.
So now let me thank you for all you have done and continue to do for me. I appreciate you and your generosity. And you can be sure I’ll be joining you in this act of kindness.